Skip navigation

Climate change and differentiated vulnerability in rural Costa Rica

The overall objective of this project is to explore how climate change and social inequality interact to produce differentiated vulnerabilities in a complex context (in which gender interacts with ethnicity, age, and household roles).

Active project


Project contact

Lisa Segnestam

By applying a combination of feminist political ecology and vulnerability theory, aspects relating to gender, power structures, resource access, division of labor, and politics of place are captured. Based on these aspects, which are central for gender differentiated vulnerability, two case studies are performed in rural Costa Rica. These are selected so that an intersection between gender, ethnicity, age, and role in household (whether one is a head or a member of a household) can be analyzed, thus avoiding the binary categorization of women and men that has been too common within mainstream gender analysis of climate change thus far. What capacities different social groups have is captured with oral history interviews, and the result analyzed by looking at different types of capitals, which taken together allows for an examination of possible gendered implications. An analysis of the capacity to cope and adapt to those climatic events one is exposed to is furthermore enabled. Thus, a better understanding of how different social groups ́ power positions interact can be achieved, increasing the possibilities of reaching a more equal and less vulnerable society.

House in Cambodia

Photo: Lisa Segnestam / SEI.


Design and development by Soapbox.