Important progress is being made on understanding the health impacts of climate change - a critical research "frontier" (Rohr and Dobson 2011). The impacts are "wide-ranging" across scales and include indirect and direct effects (Hales, Weinstein and Woodward 2011). An example is evidence of links between rainfall and malaria (Pascual, Dobson, and Bouma 2009). Research on migration-climate links is also progressing, with recent science suggesting much environmentally-related migration will be internal, or short-distance, since international, and longer-distance, migration is costly (e.g. Gray 2009). Even so, increases in displacement due to extreme events are likely (Bardsley and Hugo 2010). The health implications of climate change will likely shape migration trends -- while the migratory impacts of climate change will likely shape health. Even so, this intersection has not received substantial research attention. Support is requested for five annual conferences focused on climate, migration and health. The first three conferences will focus on 1) natural disasters and displacement, 2) urbanization and 3) rural land use change - each representing policy-relevant arenas where climate-migration-health issues converge. The topical foci of years 4 and 5 remain undetermined in order to be responsive to emerging research and policy needs. The continuing advancement of climate knowledge, combined with its policy importance, necessitate regular conferences. Each year, substantial progress is made on measuring and projecting climate and understanding the implications of change and new data are regularly made publicly available. Annual conferences will facilitate timely research response to key policy questions by making use of emerging frameworks and data advancements. The University of Colorado Population Center (CUPC) is well-situated to host the annual conferences given the presence of leading researchers in each of the center's research themes: 1) environmental demography, 2) migration and population distribution, and 3) health and mortality. In addition, the conference organizers have strong collaborative ties with CU's renowned "Natural Hazards Center" as well as with the Boulder-based National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) - with each institution participating in the proposed conferences. Strong relationships with the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and the Population Reference Bureau form the basis for the policy communications components. The Institute of Behavioral Science and CUPC have substantial experience in organizing practical, impactful, productive workshops. The conferences proposed here are small (~15 participants representing diversity in gender, race/ethnicity, geography and discipline). Research presentations are based on near-complete papers, providing material for pursuit of special issues in high-impact scholarly outlets. This approach builds on a successful May 2012 CUPC-NCAR workshop on "Migration, Urbanization and Climate Change."
The proposed workshops contribute to knowledge of the important link between climate change, human migration and public health. Examples include the negative health outcomes which characterize resettlement camps and the potential for climate change to result in increasing resettlement. The workshops will bring together researchers who examine these connections, to share their work and identify policy-relevant research gaps.