Small States Matters

Small States Matters focuses on the opportunities and challenges faced by small states in the global economy. Topics cover international finance and capital markets, international trade, the environment, natural disasters, macroeconomic management, and economic and social development. The Commonwealth defines small states as member countries with a population size of 1.5 million people or less. Larger countries – Botswana, Jamaica, Lesotho, Namibia and Papua New Guinea – are designated as small states because they share many characteristics of small states. Thirty-one of the 53 member countries of the Commonwealth are small states.


Pacific Small Island Developing States and Climate Change Migration

Small Island Developing States (SIDS) in the Pacific are highly vulnerable to environmental changes. Climate change constricts the number of livelihoods possible there, causing the influx of people from rural islands to more ‘urban’ islands with municipal centres. This paper examines the three largest contemporary cases of climate change resettlement in the Pacific region: Kiribati, Tuvalu, and the Carterets (Papua New Guinea). It shows that climate change migration in the region is particularly pressing and unique because it involves indigenous people moving to places in which they may not have access to resources. It examines the cultural, political, economic, and environmental aspects of each migration. Lastly, it argues that successful relocation in the Pacific involves measures that allow people agency or the ability to maintain a livelihood, as well as freedom of cultural expression.


Keywords: resettlement, climate change, small states, migration, environment
JEL: Q54: Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics / Environmental Economics / Climate; Natural Disasters and Their Management; Global Warming; R23: Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics / Household Analysis / Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics: Regional Migration; Regional Labor Markets; Population; Neighborhood Characteristics
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