Climate change impacts and adaptation strategies in rural Cambodia: perceptions from flood-affected communities in Kratie

Dr Bryan Boruff1, Professor Andreas  Neef2, Mrs Sochanny HAK2, Dr Siphat  Touch3, Dr Chanrith Ngin2, Vidushi Patel1

1The University Of Western Australia, Crawley, Australia,

2The University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand,

3Ministry of Rural Development, Phnom Penh   , Cambodia


Most studies and development interventions have considered climate change adaptation and post-disaster recovery processes as two separate issues. Yet there is increasing evidence that post-disaster recovery can only be successful and sustainable when it not only restores the pre-disaster livelihood situation, but evokes long-term efforts to enhance adaptive capacities to cope with future hazards and environmental risks. As such we aim to determine the factors that enhance or constrain resilience and adaptive capacities for several Cambodian communities impacted by annual flooding and growing environmental risks.

Here we present results from Q-sort activities conducted in four agriculturally based communes situated along the Mekong River, Kratie Province. Two separate Q-sort activities were conducted in small group settings to: i) understand perceptions of, and impacts from, climatic changes and related hazards, and ii) associated coping and adaptation strategies. Consensus statements show that whilst the interplay between drought and flooding is causing increased impacts from these two hazards, floods are still perceived to provide benefits to local people. Distinguishing statements, however, highlight how the perceived causes of environmental change are nuanced and coping strategies used by each must be interpreted within the wider context of the community’s livelihood risks, vulnerability and resilience.


Vidushi Amit Patel has completed masters in Geomatics from Centre for Environmental Planning and Technology University,India. Currently she is a PhD Candidate Geography and Planning, School of Agriculture and Environment, University of Western Australia. She is also affiliated with Cooperative Research Center (CRC) for Honeybee Products. Her research Interests include geography of human-environment interactions, spatial modelling for sustainable systems and climate change.


The Institute of Australian Geographers (IAG) is the principal body representing geographers and promoting the study and application of geography in Australia. It was founded in 1958 and since then has promoted, supported and defended Australian geography.

IAG Website

Conference Managers

Please contact the team at Conference Design with any questions regarding the conference.

© 2019 Conference Design Pty Ltd