Managing Climate Migration: Experimental Evidence from Bangladesh
We propose a set of pilot surveys and survey experiments, to be conducted in collaboration with BRAC, to explore the pressing yet understudied area of climate migration. These surveys will study the demand for a BRAC-designed climate migration program, and whether climate change has a causal impact on that demand. The pilot is an essential input into BRAC’s decision on whether to design and test a full-scale program. The work will take place in Bangladesh, one of the countries most vulnerable to climate change on account of its dense population, low elevation, and large coastline. Rural to urban migration is likely to be the dominant response to the changes in climate, which will make a number of regions and agricultural activities untenable. The successful integration of these rural individuals into urban areas is likely to require training and social assistance programs of the kind offered by BRAC. However, very little is known as to how the availability of this type of program would affect household decision-making. Our surveys will shed light on this question and will also answer ancillary questions, helping us understand whether rural Bangladeshi households have a clear understanding of likely local climate trends and to uncover climate change's causal impact on migration intentions.