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28 February 2012
The international community needs to extend the criteria it uses to allocate development aid to include their vulnerability to climate change Eminent French economist, Professor Patrick Guillaumont will argue at Deakin University's Fusion lecture this coming Monday, March 5.
Director of the Alfred Deakin Research Institute, Professor David Lowe, said The Fusion lecture series featured prominent thinkers on current public policy issues, and are named in recognition of the intellectual and political legacy of Alfred Deakin, Australia's second Prime Minister and a leading figure in Australian federation.
"The Fusion lectures draw inspiration from Alfred Deakin in bringing different disciplines to bear in interpreting and responding to global and regional change," he said.
"Professor Guillaumont's lecture, 'Measuring structural vulnerability at the country level: why and how?' will examine the link between countries in need and their vulnerability to a range of issues and how this should be factored into the allocation of development assistance."
Professor Guillaumont who is Président of the Fondation pour les Etudes et Recherches sur le Développement International (FERDI) said with the global instability of the world economy, along with the global effects of climate change, vulnerability has become a multifaceted concept, particularly for those working with countries in need of assistance.
"Countries can be vulnerable in three ways," he said.
"For instance a country can be vulnerable to events from outside (structural vulnerability) which ultimately affect the wellbeing of its population.
"These threats emerge slowly.
"A country can also be vulnerable to obstacles which impede economic growth.
"These are threats which can emerge in the medium term.
"Finally they can be vulnerable to the effects of climate change.
"These threats are likely to have an impact in a longer term and increase over time."
Professor Guillaumont said the United Nations used a country's risk of exposure to structural and economic shocks to categorise developing countries requiring special assistance from the international community.
"Of course there are links between the two concepts of vulnerability," he said.
"Moreover, economic development and adaptation to climate change are most often related.
"What we are arguing is that there needs to be more coordination between the policy and criteria used to identify the vulnerable countries, so international assistance can be directed more appropriately."
The lecture is free and will be held at the Village Roadshow Theatrette, State Library of Victoria, Melbourne.
Time: 5.30pm for a 6pm start
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