2022 Cluster Highlights

Dr Sarah Milne

Reserach highlights

Dr Sarah Milne published a book about global efforts to save nature, called “Corporate nature: An insider’s ethnography of global conservation”. Published with the University of Arizona Press, here: https://uapress.arizona.edu/book/corporate-nature.

The book explores the origins and effects of a prominent policy idea known as Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES) – an idea that has spawned key contemporary climate mitigation policies like REDD+ and Nature-Based Solutions. The book offers a cautionary tale: it shows how mainstream conservation organisations are often ill-equipped to implement the “solutions” they propose in complex settings, such as in Southeast Asia. By examining how things can go wrong, new ideas for conservation practice can emerge.


Associate Professor Rebecca Monson

Research highlights

Gender, Property and Politics in the Pacific: Who Speaks for Land?Cambridge Univeristy Press, January 2023.

  • Rebecca Monson takes gender relations as a critical entry point for understanding struggles over land in Solomon Islands, and the ways in which seemingly ‘local’ property disputes are bound up with multiscalar struggles over natural resources and political ordering. The book provides crucial insights into the relationship between property disputes and the authority of public institutions, and also points to the ways in which extractive industries, urbanisation and climate change contribute to widespread feelings of insecurity. 

Property rights and climate migration: Adaptive governance in the South PacificLaw and Governance, April 2022.

  • This article draws on multidisciplinary perspectives and ongoing work in Solomon Islands to propose an analytical frame for polycentric property system responses to climate migration. It suggests that the heuristic of absorptive capacity may provide a basis to consider adaptive property law for a future of climate migration.

Property, climate change, and community relocation in the Pacific in The Routledge Handbook of Property, Law and Society, Routledge, November 2022.

  • The Routledge Handbook on Property, Law and Society includes a number of chapters that address the relationship between property, climate change, and disasters. This chapter provides an accessible account of key property issues facing policy-makers as they confront the challenge of climate-induced internal migration in the Pacific. It provides an introduction to the region’s diverse land tenure systems and considers recent attempts by governments to address the prospect of community relocation. It argues that aid donors remain committed to state-centric understandings of property, and this constrains more local responses to climate-induced displacement.

Public policy initiatives

Associate Professor Rebecca Monson worked with Sustineo and Dignity Pasifik to develop evidence-based guidelines for planned climate relocation in Solomon Islands. The Solomon Islands Planned Relocation Guidelines were handed over to the Solomon Islands Government in July 2022, and funded by the International Organization for Migration.