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The BRISMES Annual Conference

Ecology, Crisis, and Power in the Middle East

Event details

It is widely expected that the Middle East will be one of the areas of the world most impacted by anthropogenic climate change, with predictions of sharp fluctuations in temperature and sea levels, changing precipitation patterns, and increased frequency of extreme weather events. Much analysis of these climactic effects, however, tends to focus on their techno-scientific dimensions, ignoring what they might mean for established patterns of political and economic power in the region. In this context, it is essential to consider how ecological change might intersect with the region’s multiple and interconnected crises, including unprecedented levels of human displacement, food and water scarcity, war and violence, and some of the highest levels of economic inequality and social marginalisation in the world. The ways in which these crises reinforce and overlap with ecological change will shape future dynamics of political, social, and economic power in the region. Similarly how have actors, both in the private and public sector, been preparing for climate change? What renewable and other technologies have they embraced and what are their implications? Despite some important emerging research on these themes, issues of ecology have not been adequately addressed in Middle East studies. The Middle East is also largely absent in contemporary debates around climate change. This theme is also broad and necessarily interdisciplinary, inviting contributions from across the social sciences, humanities, and natural sciences.


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