Bridging the Governance Gap: Protecting the Education Rights of Climate Displaced Persons in South and Southeast Asia

Recommendations on ensuring education and learning continuity for people affected by climate-induced displacement.

Date Published
22 May 2023
Ying-Syuan (Elaine) Huang Philip Vaughter Jonghwi Park
Series Title
UNU-IAS Policy Briefs
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The brief identifies policy gaps contributing to the persistence of learning disruptions, and offers guidance on building education systems resilient to the impacts of climate change. It is based on research conducted by UNU-IAS and UNESCO in Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Tuvalu and Viet Nam. This research also produced the book Asia-Pacific Regional Synthesis: Climate Change, Displacement and the Right to Education, published by UNESCO & UNU-IAS in April 2023.


South Asia is particularly vulnerable to natural disasters, with millions of displacements recorded every year. Yet issues of climate-induced displacement and migration remain underrepresented in policy discourse, advocacy, and research. As a result, students in disaster-prone areas are often kept out of school during and after disasters.


  • Protect the rights of climate displaced persons through an intersectoral and integrated approach to education, disaster management, and climate change adaptation policies.
  • Support research and policy development, including by scaling up existing safe-school initiatives to enhance local adaptive capacity.
  • Prioritize marginalized learners and educational support that meets the physical and psychological needs of climate displaced persons, such as basic study materials, counseling support, and multilingual learning toolkits.

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