The growth in world population (estimated to reach 9 billion by 2050) and rising average incomes among people in developing countries work in tandem to raise the demands for food, energy, water, and land. A combination of factors including natural resource degradation (e.g., unsustainable agricultural practices) and over exploitation imply that the resource base required for sustainable food production and natural resource management is becoming increasingly scarce. Climate change makes the choices more complicated and its interaction with poverty is intricate. Smallholder farmers who largely depend on rain-fed agricultural production and produce most of the staple crops are more vulnerable to climate variability. Therefore, building climate resilience and prudent natural resource management are key going forward.
Research under this thematic area will focus on: a) understanding the impact of climate change on rural livelihoods; b) analysing the adoption of climate smart agricultural practices; c) understanding the role of forest resources, e.g., Non-Timber Forest Products (NTFP) to rural household welfare; d) analysing drivers of deforestation and land use change, and options for mitigating climate change (e.g., REDD+) in the context the 2015 Paris Agreement. The outputs will contribute towards the design of environmental policies and interventions that support climate change.