Chandni Singh

Chandni Singh
Indian Institute for Human Settlements (IIHS) · School of Environment and Sustainability

PhD

About

88
Publications
54,013
Reads
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2,381
Citations
Citations since 2016
79 Research Items
2372 Citations
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Introduction
An interdisciplinary researcher specialising in climate change adaptation, multi-dimensional vulnerability, disaster management, livelihood dynamics, and natural resource management. I do mixed methods research with a focus on ethnographic and participatory techniques. I'm a Contributing Author on the IPCC Special Report on 1.5C and Lead Author in its 6th Assessment Report (Working Group II). I serve on the editorial boards of Regional Environmental Change, Climate & Development, & Urbanisation.
Additional affiliations
March 2014 - December 2014
Bioversity International
Position
  • Consultant
September 2013 - present
Indian Institute for Human Settlements (IIHS)
Position
  • Researcher
September 2010 - July 2014
University of Reading
Position
  • PhD Student

Publications

Publications (88)
Article
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The Paris Agreement put adaptation prominently on the global climate action agenda. Despite a surge in research and praxis-based knowledge on adaptation, a critical policy roadblock is synthesizing and assessing this burgeoning evidence. We develop an approach to assess the multidimensional feasibility of adaptation options in a robust and transpar...
Article
Cities are at the forefront of climate action as never before: they concentrate risk but also provide opportunities to innovate. Situated at the crossroads of extensive urbanization, unequal development, and high climate vulnerability, Indian cities face an urgent imperative to adapt to current and projected climate change impacts. While a global a...
Article
Loss and Damage studies have tended to focus on rapid-onset events with lesser attention to slow-onset events such as drought. Even when discussed, narratives around droughts emphasize implications on rural populations and there remain empirical and conceptual gaps on drought impacts in urban areas. We focus on losses and damages associated with ur...
Article
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Gender mediates climate vulnerability and adaptation action. Consequently, climate change adaptation policy has seen a push towards ‘mainstreaming’ gender and prioritizing ‘gender-responsive’ climate action. However, it is unclear to what extent this mainstreaming advances or obscures gender considerations and whether current climate policies refle...
Article
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The Paris Agreement articulates a global goal on adaptation, which aims to ensure an ‘adequate adaptation response’ to the ‘global temperature goal’, and requires countries to report progress through periodic global stocktakes. However, there remain conceptual and methodological challenges in defining an adaptation goal and mixed evidence on what e...
Article
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What the Latest Science on Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability means for Cities and Urban Areas, offers a concise and accessible urban-focused distillation of the IPCC Working Group II Report. The scale, reach, and complexity of contemporary urbanisation can compound the risks from climate change for cities. Cities and urban areas have a critica...
Book
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The Summary for Urban Policymakers (SUP) series distils the IPCC reports into targeted summaries to inform action at the city and regional scale. This third volume in the series, What the Latest Science on Climate Change Mitigation Means for Cities and Urban Areas offers a concise and accessible distillation of the IPCC Working Group III Report for...
Article
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In this Personal View, we explain the ways that climatic risks affect the transmission, perception, response, and lived experience of COVID-19. First, temperature, wind, and humidity influence the transmission of COVID-19 in ways not fully understood, although non-climatic factors appear more important than climatic factors in explaining disease tr...
Article
This commentary from the Journal Editorial Board sets out the research agenda for the journal and invites contributions. We want to elicit and synthesize research- and practice-based knowledge toward the goal of resilient, equitable cities in a world with less than 1.5°C of warming, focusing on the transformational change needed to achieve this goa...
Book
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Arguing that ‘the moment of the now’ calls for fresh, creative thinking in the search for solutions, this White Paper both explores the state of research at the intersection between culture, heritage and climate change, and makes a case for a set of approaches, perspectives and conversations that we need to have—or that we need to have in new ways....
Chapter
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This Cross-Chapter Box highlights the intersecting issues of gender, climate change adaptation, climate justice and transformative pathways. A gender perspective does not centre only on women or men but examines structures, processes and relationships of power between and among groups of men and women and how gender, particularly in its non-binary...
Article
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This article provides a stocktake the adaptation literature between 2013 and 2019 to better understand how responses affect risk under the particularly challenging conditions of compound climate impacts. Across 39 countries, 45 response types to compound hazards display anticipatory (9%), reactive (33%) and maladaptive characteristics (41%), as wel...
Article
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Climate change impacts are being felt across sectors in all regions of the world, and adaptation projects are being implemented to reduce climate risks and existing vulnerabilities. Climate adaptation actions also have significant synergies and tradeoffs with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including SDG 5 on gender equality. Questions ar...
Article
Despite considerable interest in urban and peri-urban agriculture (UPA) in recent decades, its contributions to urban sustainability and human wellbeing remain contested. This systematic literature review examines the geographical landscape of the peer-reviewed literature on UPA and assesses its reported outcomes on sustainability and wellbeing. Fo...
Article
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Urban populations in South Asia are regularly exposed to poor air quality, especially elevated concentrations of fine particulate matter (PM 2.5 ). However, the potential differential burden for the urban poor has received little attention. Here, we evaluate the links between occupation, patterns of exposure to PM2.5, and the impacts at an individu...
Chapter
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The feasibility assessment (FA) presents a systematic framework to assess adaptation and mitigation options organised by system transitions. This Cross-Chapter Box assessed the feasibility of 23 adaptation options across six dimensions: economic, technological, institutional, socio-cultural, environmental-ecological, and geophysical to identify fac...
Article
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Governments, businesses, and civil society organizations have diverse policy tools to incentivize adaptation. Policy tools can shape the type and extent of adaptation, and therefore, function either as barriers or enablers for reducing risk and vulnerability. Using data from a systematic review of academic literature on global adaptation responses...
Article
The paper highlights some of the key concerns across the sectors of school, higher and teacher education. A few potential research themes that can help problematise the issues raised have been identified. An emphasis is laid on the need to build on practice-based repositories of knowledge, curricular framing and pedagogic strategies. Examining the...
Article
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Assessing global progress on human adaptation to climate change is an urgent priority. Although the literature on adaptation to climate change is rapidly expanding, little is known about the actual extent of implementation. We systematically screened >48,000 articles using machine learning methods and a global network of 126 researchers. Our synthe...
Article
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Constraints and limits to adaptation are critical to understanding the extent to which human and natural systems can successfully adapt to climate change. We conduct a systematic review of 1,682 academic studies on human adaptation responses to identify patterns in constraints and limits to adaptation for different regions, sectors, hazards, adapta...
Article
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Mobility is a key livelihood and risk management strategy, including in the context of climate change. The COVID-19 pandemic has reinforced long standing concerns that migrant populations remain largely overlooked in economic development, adaptation to climate change, and spatial planning. We synthesize evidence across multiple studies that confirm...
Technical Report
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The 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami claimed nearly eight thousand lives across Tamil Nadu and affected more than eight lakh1 people indirectly through loss of houses, personal belongings, and livelihoods. The event, commonly described as unprecedented, exposed the state’s inadequate preparedness and its limited institutional and financial capacity to pre...
Article
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Characterized by inequalities along gender, income, caste, and ethnic differences, urban areas are especially vulnerable to climate risks. Recognizing this, cities are adapting through infrastructural, ecosystem-based, institutional, and behavioural interventions at multiple scales. However, the extent to which these interventions enable or constra...
Article
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Extreme heat events impact people and ecosystems across the globe, and they are becoming more frequent and intense in a warming climate. Responses to heat span sectors and geographic boundaries. Prior research has documented technologies or options that can be deployed to manage extreme heat and examples of how individuals, communities, governments...
Chapter
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This chapter highlights changing practices of everyday water access and use in Kolar, Karnataka, charting the shift from a reliance on traditional water management institutions (neerganti) and infrastructure (kere), to the privatization and atomization of water resources (borewells and buying drinking water). On the one hand, these shifts have unde...
Article
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We contend that the representational aspects of recovery play an important but under-researched role in shaping long-term outcomes for disaster-affected populations. Ideas constructed around events, people and processes, and conveyed through discussion, texts and images, are seldom neutral and can be exclusionary in their effect. This review draws...
Preprint
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We present the first systematic, global stocktake of the academic literature on human adaptation. We screen 48,316 documents and identify 1,682 articles that present empirical research documenting human efforts to reduce risk from climate change and associated hazards. Coding and synthesizing this literature highlights that the overall extent of ad...
Article
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Though there is increasing recognition of the cultural dimensions that shape climate change adaptation, our experience from working with actors engaged in adaptation policy and practice suggests that the role of culture still tends to be conceived in overly narrow and fixed terms. This is exemplified in portrayals of conservative cultural norms as...
Article
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Formalised knowledge systems, including universities and research institutes, are important for contemporary societies. They are, however, also arguably failing humanity when their impact is measured against the level of progress being made in stimulating the societal changes needed to address challenges like climate change. In this research we use...
Article
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India has the largest area of rainfed dryland agriculture globally, with a variety of distinct types of farming systems producing most of its coarse cereals, food legumes, minor millets, and large amounts of livestock. All these are vital for national and regional food and nutritional security. Yet, the rainfed drylands have been relatively neglect...
Article
Water availability mediates rural and urban development through impacts on sectors such as agriculture and industry. Recognising that climatic risks attenuate this water availability, various adaptation options have been implemented in the water sector. To inform adaptation prioritisation, it is critical to assess the growing literature on adaptati...
Preprint
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Context : It is now widely accepted that the climate is changing, and that societal responses will need to be rapid and comprehensive to prevent the most severe impacts. A key milestone in global climate governance is to assess progress on adaptation. To-date, however, there has been negligible robust, systematic synthesis of progress on adaptation...
Preprint
Full-text available
Context : It is now widely accepted that the climate is changing, and that societal response will need to be rapid and comprehensive to prevent the most severe impacts. A key milestone in global climate governance is to assess progress on adaptation. To-date, however, there has been negligible robust, systematic synthesis of progress on adaptation...
Article
Full-text available
Formalised knowledge systems, including universities and research institutes, are important for contemporary societies. They are, however, also arguably failing humanity when their impact is measured against the level of progress being made in stimulating the societal changes needed to address challenges like climate change. In this research we use...
Article
Full-text available
Recent evidence shows that climate change is leading to irreversible and existential impacts on vulnerable communities and countries across the globe. Among other effects, this has given rise to public debate and engagement around notions of climate crisis and emergency. The Loss and Damage (L&D) policy debate has emphasized these aspects over the...
Article
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Aim: Renewable energy (RE) systems can be effective tools for rural communities for meeting goals for development and climate change mitigation and adaptation. RE systems provide small amounts of electricity fostering community development through improved energy access, livelihood opportunities, and improved quality of life. Communities in rural G...
Article
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Purpose of Review South Asia is highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, owing to the high dependency on climate-sensitive livelihoods and recurrent extreme events. Consequently, an increasing number of households are adopting labour migration as a livelihood strategy to diversify incomes, spread risks, and meet aspirations. Under the Co...
Article
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There is growing concern about sustainable and equitable adaptation in climate change hotspots, commonly understood as locations that concentrate high climatic variability, societal vulnerability and negative impacts on livelihood systems. Emphasizing gender within these debates highlights how demographic, socioeconomic and agro-ecological contexts...
Article
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Vertical integration, which creates strategic linkages between national and sub-national levels, is being promoted as important for climate change adaptation. Decentralisation, which transfers authority and responsibility to lower levels of organisation, serves a similar purpose and has been in place for a number of decades. Based on four case stud...
Article
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People in developing countries face multiple risks, and their response decisions sit at the complex and often opaque interface of climatic stressors, constrained resource access, and changing livelihoods, social structures, and personal aspirations. Many risk management studies use a well-established toolkit of methodologies—household surveys, focu...
Chapter
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This chapter interrogates the notion of justice (or the lack of it) in India’s domestic policies and political priorities for climate change in the context of development interventions or adaptation strategies in regions with highly vulnerable communities. Drawing on three sites in Southern India, we distil how vulnerability is created, exacerbated...
Article
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Semi-arid regions across Africa and Asia are characterized by rapidly changing biophysical regimes, structural vulnerabilities, and increasing livelihood precarity. Gender, class, and caste/ethnic identities and relationships, and the specific social, economic and political power, roles and responsibilities they entail, shape the choices and decisi...
Article
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Migration is a key livelihood strategy to diversify incomes, reduce risks associated with rainfed agriculture (and the effects of climate change), and meet personal aspirations. Drawing on life history interviews with migrant and non‐migrant families, we explore the role of migration and commuting in addressing livelihood vulnerability along a rura...
Article
Caouette, D and Kapoor, D., editors, 2016. Beyond Colonialism, Development and Globalization: Social Movements and Critical Perspectives. London: Zed Books. 292 pp. 28.95$, ISBN: 978-1-78360-584-2 pb
Article
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Studies of climate change at specific intervals of future warming have primarily been addressed through top-down approaches using climate projections and modelled impacts. In contrast, bottom-up approaches focus on the recent past and present vulnerability. Here, we examine climate signals at different increments of warming and consider the need to...
Article
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In drylands across the global South, rural livelihoods are challenged by existing development deficits, and are now increasingly vulnerable to climate variability and change. People, governments, and a range of non-state actors are responding to these climatic and non-climatic risks through planned and autonomous response strategies. While several...
Article
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Rapid environmental change, increasing climate variability, land fragmentation, and underlying institutional lacunae have shaped rural livelihoods in India. Increasingly, rural-urban migration has been a significant livelihood strategy to manage risks, meet aspirations , and move out of increasingly unprofitable agriculture. I argue that this movem...
Technical Report
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Different framings of effectiveness will influence the entire adaptation process, from identifying the vulnerabilities that adaptation aims to address, to determining who benefits and who is left behind, which adaptation actions are chosen and funded, and how they are implemented. Justice, governance, community-based adaptation, and sustainability...
Book
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This Summary for Urban Policymakers is synthesised from SR1.5, the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), and relevant supporting research. It builds on thirty years of science from the IPCC and climate diplomacy. The Paris Agreement, signed in 2015 within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate...
Article
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Water scarcity is one of the most critical issues facing agriculture today. To understand how people manage the risk of water scarcity and growing pressures of increased climate variability, exploring perceptions of risk and how these perceptions feed into response behaviour and willingness to adapt is critical. This paper revisits existing framewo...
Chapter
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This chapter discusses how the global economy and socio-technical and socio-ecological systems can transition to 1.5°C-consistent pathways and adapt to warming of 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. In the context of systemic transitions, the chapter assesses adaptation and mitigation options, including carbon dioxide removal (CDR), and potential so...
Book
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This ‘how to’ guide has been developed to guide researchers, step-by-step, through the process of using the life history approach to conduct interviews. The idea for the development of this handbook arose following a series of life history interviews that were conducted in India, Ghana, Kenya and Namibia under the Adaptation at Scale in Semi-Arid R...