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Adapting to climate change in a non-adaptive political regime: a case study of Jordan SSS1

  • School: School of Social Sciences
  • Study mode(s): Full-time / Part-time
  • Starting: 2022
  • Funding: UK student / EU student (non-UK) / International student (non-EU) / Fully-funded


NTU's Fully-funded PhD Studentship Scheme 2022

Project ID: SSS1

Jordan is one of the world’s most resource poor, arid and freshwater stressed countries (Aviram et al., 2014; Darmame and Potter, 2011). Its environmental challenges have been exacerbated by poor governance, mismanagement of natural resources, demographic pressures, and low levels of economic resiliency (El-Anis, 2019: 117-123). Over the last two decades climate change has aggravated these challenges (Feitelson and Tubi, 2017). Jordan is exceptionally vulnerable to climate change and has limited adaptation capacities (Terdiman, 2019: 135-150) threatening its economic and social well-being. As Jordan is a pivotal stabiliser in the Middle East, the way it adapts to climate change not only affects its own stability, but also that of the whole region.

Climate change is worsening freshwater scarcity in Jordan by causing a decline in groundwater levels, reducing stream flow, increasing freshwater demand, and causing a reduction in discharge from major springs (Hussein 2019). The situation is worsening with Jordan’s ‘mean daily temperature… [is] extremely likely to rise by 2.1°C to 4°C by 2070–2100’ which will lead to a decrease in an ‘annual cumulated precipitation by 15% to 21%’ (Hammouri et al. 2015: 4). c.90% of Jordan’s territory is arid or semi-arid and this area is increasing due to decreasing precipitation and increased desertification (Alrushediat et al., 2016).  Other impacts of climate change include pests and diseases spreading to areas not previously affected, soil erosion and a reduction in arable land (Alrushediat et al., 2016).  Climate change is also worsening Jordan’s environmental problems through social mechanisms by creating and maintaining social conflicts and economic stress (Hammouri et al. 2015).

While there has been an increase in the number of studies of climate change politics in developing states (Poberezhskaya and Danilova 2021), Jordan has been understudied (Feitelson and Tubi, 2017; Weinthal et al., 2015). The impact of climate change on Jordan’s environmental problems is not fully understood, and there are significant gaps in our knowledge of how Jordanian climate change adaptation policies are developed and implemented. Therefore, the proposed project will ask: Who are the key actors contributing and affecting the development and implementation of the strategy? What is the role of country’s geographical, political and economic characteristics? What are the consequences for the country and the region if Jordan fails to deliver its adaptation plans? We would encourage proposals that will facilitate informed policy recommendations on how climate change adaptation strategy can be strengthened and implemented in a more efficient manner.

School strategic research priority

This project will align with the Centre for Behavioural Research Methods (via the International Security and Sustainability group) and to the School's sustainability, and safety and security of citizens themes.

Entry qualifications

For the eligibility criteria, visit our studentship application page.

How to apply

For guidance and to make an application, please visit our studentship application page. The application deadline is Friday 14 January 2022.

Fees and funding

This is part of NTU's 2022 fully-funded PhD Studentship Scheme.

Guidance and support

Download our full applicant guidance notes for more information.

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