Environmental Displacement and Community Response

Internal environmental displacement occurs in all countries, including the United States. However, most of the recent research and reports looking at environmental (including climate change) displacement focus on countries struggling with poverty and the potential increase in the number of people seeking refuge in wealthier countries. The reports and research projects looking at environmental displacement in the US and beyond primarily focus on large quantitative modeling or policy analysis of government response and assistance during and after disasters or in cases of mass migration and conflict. We have way less information, however, on how communities themselves react and organize in response to environmental displacement and what motivates them. With our research, we aim to fill this gap. We focus on the analysis of environmental displacement and the community responses through primary qualitative data collection and analysis. Through a series of case studies in the US and the Western Balkan countries, we seek to understand community motivations, resilience, and organizing strategies in a wide variety of contexts and displacement scenarios. 

News and Publications: 

Professor Zaman’s Lecture on the Global Refugee Crisis: What can scientist and engineers do to ease the suffering and protect the vulnerable?



CFD Director of Programs, Marina Lazetic Receives The Dwight D. Eisenhower/Clifford Roberts Graduate Fellowship



  • Peer-review article: Mark Suprenant, Rana Hussein, Najwa Al-Dheeb, Huda Basaleem and Muhammad H. Zaman, Internal Displacement’s Impact on Health in Yemen. IDMC Reports, 2021. https://www.internal-displacement.org/publications/internal-displacements-impacts-on-health-in-yemen
  • Ope-Ed: Hasan, Tahera, and Muhammad Hamid Zaman. “They’re the Invisible Victims of Climate Change.” NPR. NPR, November 9, 2021. https://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2021/11/09/1053818525/theyre-the-invisible-victims-of-climate-change.
  • Ope-Ed: Lazetic, Marina, and Karen Jacobsen. “The 2021 Hurricane Season Showed Us Isn’t Prepared as Climate-Related Disasters Push People Deeper into Poverty.” The Conversation, September 13, 2022. https://theconversation.com/hunker-down-is-not-enough-2021-hurricane-season-showed-us-isnt-prepared-asclimate-%20related-disasters-push-people-deeper-into-poverty-169075.
  • Ope-Ed: Zaman, Muhammad Hamid. “The Climate-Conflict Nexus: By Muhammad Hamid Zaman.” Project Syndicate, January 31, 2018. https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/climate-change-conflict-public-health-by-muhammad-hamid-zaman0-2017-12?barrier=accesspaylog.