MISTY: Migration, Transformation and Sustainability
Societies can shift away from current trajectories of unsustainability but current explanations fail to systematically account for demographic shifts, notably migration and mobility. This project incorporates the contemporary dynamics and challenges of migration as parameters affecting the pathways to sustainability. The research develops a model of the specific relationships between migration and sustainability such as consumption patterns and resource intensity. The project investigates how the identity and place attachment of migrant populations affect sustainability and how they are engaged in planning for sustainability. This knowledge is used to investigate how migration policies work to support or hinder the transformation towards sustainability.
The research uses key informant interviews and participatory action research in localities that span the range and diversity of migration types and dimensions. The research incorporates the diversity of experiences of integration and segregation of both domestic and international migrant communities. The research focuses on common issues in localities including Ghana, Netherlands, Belgium, Bangladesh, Mozambique and the United States.
The project generates new knowledge on the sustainability potential of the key demographic issue of contemporary society, that of the movement of populations across space. The findings are directly relevant for global dialogues on migration and development and for implementing the Sustainable Development Goals. The principal beneficiaries are new and established populations who experience recurrent adversity in the process of integration into host societies, and policy makers grappling with sustainability transitions.
Project leader: Prof. N. Adger, University of Exeter (United Kingdom)
Principal investigators: Prof. F. Gemenne, University of Liege (Belgium), Prof. E. Carr, Clark University (United States), Prof. E. Boyd, Lund University Centre for Sustainability Studies (Sweden), Prof. S. Codjoe, Regional Institute for Population Studies (Ghana), Dr. S. Fransen, University of Maastricht (the Netherlands).