François Gemenne


A specialist of environmental geopolitics and migration dynamics, François Gemenne is a FNRS senior research associate at the University of Liège, where he is the Director of the Hugo Observatory. He also serves as co-director (with Bastien Alex) of the Observatory on Defence and Climate of the French Ministry of Defence. He lectures on environmental and migration policies in various universities, including Sciences Po (Paris and Grenoble) and the Free University of Brussels, where he holds the Bernheim Chair on Peace and Citizenship. 

His research deals mostly with environmental and migration governance. He has worked in particular with populations displaced by environmental changes, including natural disasters, and the policies of adaptation to climate change. He has conducted field studies in New Orleans after hurricane Katrina, Tuvalu, China, Kyrgyzstan, the Maldives, Mauritius and Japan, after the Fukushima disaster.

 He’s a lead author for the IPCC (WG II) and has been involved in a large number of international research projects on these issues, including EACH-FOR, HELIX, EDGE and MECLEP, for which he was the global research coordinator. He also coordinated the DEVAST project, one of the first international projects to examine the social and political consequences of the Fukushima disaster. In 2015, he was recipient of a Fulbright scholarship to pursue research at Princeton University. Previously he worked as a research fellow at Sciences Po (as the executive director of the Politics of the Earth research programme), the University of Versailles (UVSQ) and IDDRI.

He has also been the scientific advisor of the exhibition ‘Native Land. Stop Eject’ at the Fondation Cartier pour l’Art Contemporain, in Paris. He has consulted for several organisations, including the International Organisation of Migration (IOM), the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the World Bank, the ACP Observatory on Migration and the British government (Foresight). In 2010, he was awarded the ISDT-Wernaers Prize for achievement in the communication of science to the general public.

He holds a joint doctorate in political science from Sciences Po Paris and the University of Liege (Belgium). He also holds a Master in Development, Environment and Societies from the University of Louvain, as well as a Master of Research in Political Science from the London School of Economics. Between 2008 and 2010, he was awarded a post-doctoral scholarship from the AXA Research Fund. He has published in various journals, including Science and Global Environmental Change, and has authored six books, amongst which ‘Géopolitique du Climat’ (Armand Colin, 2009 & 2015), ‘The Anthropocene and the Global Environmental Crisis’ (edited with C. Hamilton and C. Bonneuil, Routledge 2015) and an Atlas of Environmental Migration, with D. Ionesco et D. Mokhnacheva (Routledge 2016).

He is also the director of the Sustainable Development series at Presses de Sciences Po.


Last update: January 2018.





 Ionesco D., Mokhnacheva D. and Gemenne F. (2016) The Atlas of Environmental Migration. London: Routledge / Earthscan. French edition: Atlas des Migrations Environnementales (Presses de Sciences Po 2016). German edition: Atlas der Umweltmigration (Oekom Verlag 2017)

Gemenne F. (2015) Géopolitique du Climat. Paris : Armand Colin. 2nd edition of Geopolitique du Changement climatique (2009).

Tubiana L., Gemenne F. and Magnan A. (2010) Anticiper pour s’adapter. Le nouvel enjeu du changement climatique. Paris: Pearson. 

Stojanov R., Novosak J., Opiniano J., Gemenne F. and Siwek T. (2008) Development, Environment and Migration. Analysis of Linkages and Consequences. Olomouc (Czech Rep.) : Palacky University


Edited volumes


McLeman R. and Gemenne F. (Eds.) (2018) Handbook of Environmental Migration. London: Routledge.

Gemenne F., Hasegawa R. and Kanie N. (Eds.) (forthcoming 2018) Disasters, Evacuations and Democracies: Lessons from the Fukushima Disaster. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.

Gemenne F., Zickgraf C. and De Bruyckere L. (2017) The State of Environmental Migration 2017. A Review of 2016. Liège: Presses Universitaires de Liège.

Gemenne F., Zickgraf C. and Ionesco D. (2016) The State of Environmental Migration 2016. A Review of 2015. Liège: Presses Universitaires de Liège.

Rosenow-Williams K. and Gemenne F. (Eds.) (2015) Organizational Perspectives on Environmental Migration. London: Routledge.

Gemenne F. (2015) (Ed.) L’Enjeu Mondial – L’Environnement. Paris: Presses de Sciences Po.

 Hamilton C., Bonneuil C. and Gemenne F. (Eds.) (2015) The Anthropocene and the Global Environmental Crisis: Rethinking modernity in a new epoch. London: Routledge.

Zaccai E., Gemenne F. and Decroly J.-M. (Eds.) (2012) Controverses climatiques, sciences et politique. Paris: Presses de Sciences Po.

Carvalho S. and Gemenne F. (Eds) (2009) Nations and their Histories. Constructions and Representations. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.


Guest editor of a journal’s special issue

 “Environnement et Relations Internationales” (2015), CERISCOPE, online

‘Migrations internationales, un enjeu Nord-Sud’, (2015), Alternatives Sud, March 2015.

“Climate and Security: Evidence, Emerging Risks and a New Agenda” (2014), Climatic Change (edited with N. Adger, J. Barnett and G. Dabelko), 123 (1).

“Environnement et Migrations” (2010), Hommes & Migrations., No 1284.


Articles and book chapters – peer-reviewed


Schütte S., Gemenne F., Depoux A., Zamman M. and Flahault A. (2018) A threesome is healthier than a love triangle: connecting planetary health, climate change and migration, forthcoming in The Lancet Planetary Health.

Schütte S., Depoux A., Kowalski C., Vigil S., Gemenne F. and Flahault A. (2017) The influence of health concerns in scientific and policy debates on climate change, Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

Defrance D., Ramstein G., Charbit S., Vrac M., Famien A., Sultan B., Swingedouw D., Dumas C., Gemenne F., Alvarez-Solas J., Vanderlinden J. (2017) Consequences of rapid ice-sheet melting on the Sahelian population vulnerability, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) 114 (25) : 6533-6538.

De Pryck K. and Gemenne F. (2017) The Denier-in-Chief: Climate Change, Science and the Election of Donald J. Trump, Law and Critique .

Magnan A. K., Schipper E. L. F., Burkett M., Bharwani S., Burton I., Eriksen S., Gemenne F., Schaar J. and Ziervogel, G. (2016). Addressing the risk of maladaptation to climate change. Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Climate Change, 7 (5) : 646-665 .

De Longueville F., Hountondji Y.-C., Kindo I., Gemenne F. & Ozer P. (2016). Long-term analysis of rainfall and temperature data in Burkina Faso (1950–2013). International Journal of Climatology, 36 (13) : 4393-4405.

Gemenne F. and Brücker P. (2015) From the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement to the Nansen Initiative: what the governance of environmental migration can learn from the governance of internal displacement, International Journal of Refugee Law 27 (2): 245-263

Gemenne, F. (2015) Migration as a Climate Adaptation Strategy”. In Worldwatch Institute (Ed.), State of the World 2015: Confronting Hidden Threats to Sustainability, Washington (D.C.): Island Press. 117-128.

Gemenne F. (2015) "L’Anthropocène et ses victimes. Une réflexion terminologique", CERISCOPE Environnement, [online], URL : 

Édes, B., and Gemenne, F. (2015). Managing Environmental Migration to Improve Economic and Social Outcomes in Developing Asia and Pacific”. In W. Leal Filho (Ed.), Climate Change in the Asia-Pacific Region. Berlin : Springer. 103–117.

Gemenne F., Adger N., Barnett J. and Dabelko G. (2014) Climate and Security: Evidence, Emerging Risks and a New Agenda, Climatic Change 123 (1): 1-9.

Baldwin A. and Gemenne F. (2013) “The Paradoxes of Climate Change and Migration” In Hackmann H. (Ed.) World Social Science Report: Changing Global Environments. Paris: UNESCO and ISCC. 265-268.

Gemenne F. (2013) “Les négociations internationales sur le climat, une histoire sans fin ?” In Petiteville F. and Placidi D. (Eds) Négociations Internationales. Paris: Presses de Sciences Po. 395-422

Gemenne F. (2013) “Migration doesn’t have to be a failure to adapt: an escape from environmental determinism.” In Palutikof J., Boulter S.L., Ash A.J., Stafford Smith M., Parry M., Waschka M. and Guitart D. (Eds.) Climate Adaptation Futures. Brisbane: Wiley and Sons. 235-241.

Venturini T., Gemenne F. and Severo M. (2012) Des Migrants et des Mots. Une analyse numérique des débats médiatiques sur les migrations et l’environnement, Cultures & Conflits 88: 133-156.

Gemenne F. (2012) “Environmental Migration.” In Martiniello M. and Rath J. (Eds) An Introduction to International Migration Studies. European Perspectives. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press. 237-258. 

Gemenne F. (2012) “Paysages climatiques, paysages migratoires”, Les Carnets du Paysage 23: 14-25.

Gemenne F. (2011) “ Why the numbers don’t add up: a review of predictions and forecasts for environmentally-induced migration ”, Global Environmental Change 21 (S1): 41-49.

de SherbininA., CastroM., GemenneF., CerneaM., AdamoS., FearnsideP., KriegerG., LahmaniS., Oliver-SmithA., PankhurstA., ScudderT., SingerB., TanY., WannierG., EhrhartC., HugoG., PandeyB., ShiG. (2011) Learning from the Past to Improve Future Resettlement Associated with Climate Change, Science 334 (6055): 456-457.

Shen S. and Gemenne F. (2011) Contrasted views on environmental migration: the case of Tuvaluan migration to New Zealand, International Migration 49: e224-e242.

Gemenne F. (2011) “How they became the human face of climate change. Research and policy interactions in the birth of the ‘environmental migration’ concept”, in Piguet E., Pecoud A. and De Guchteneire P. (Eds.) Migration and Climate Change. Cambridge and Paris: Cambridge University Press/UNESCO.

Gemenne F. (2011) Climate-induced Displacements in 4°C+ world, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A  369 (1934): 182-195.

Cournil C. and Gemenne F. (2010) Les populations insulaires face au changement climatique : des migrations à anticiper, VertigO 10 :3. Online :

Gemenne F. (2010) Tuvalu, un laboratoire du changement climatique ? Une critique empirique de la rhétorique des ‘canaris dans la mine’, Tiers-Monde 204: 89-108.

Gemenne F. (2010) “ What’s in a name: Social vulnerabilities and the refugee controversy in the wake of Hurricane Katrina ” in Afifi, T. and J. Jaeger (Eds), Environment, Forced Migration and Social Vulnerability. Berlin: Springer.

Poncelet A., Gemenne F., Bousetta H. and Martiniello M. (2010) “ A country made for disasters: environmental vulnerability and forced migration in Bangladesh ”, in Afifi, T. and J. Jaeger (Eds), Environment, Forced Migration and Social Vulnerability. Berlin: Springer.

Gemenne F. (2010) “ Introduction ”, Hommes & Migrations 1284 : 6-9.

Entzinger H., Jäger J. and Gemenne F. (2010) “ Le projet EACH-FOR ”, Hommes & Migrations 1284 : 10-15.

Gemenne F. (2009) “ Le droit de partir, un droit oublié ”, in Clochard O. (Ed.) Atlas des migrants en Europe. Paris : Armand Colin.

Gemenne F. (2009) “ L’environnement, nouveau facteur de migrations ? ”, in Jaffrelot C. and Lequesne C. (Ed.) L’enjeu mondial : les migrations. Paris : Presses de Sciences Po.

Gemenne F. (2009) “ De l’équité dans l’adaptation aux impacts du changement climatique ”, in Fabregoule C. and Cournil C., Changements climatiques et défis du droit. Brussels : Bruylant. 

Gemenne F. (2009) “ Belgium ”, in Fassman H. and Reeger U. (Eds.), Structural Aspects of International Migration: Dynamics of Regular Flows. Amsterdam: IMISCOE – University of Amsterdam Press.

Gemenne F. (2009) “ United Kingdom”, in Fassman H. and Reeger U. (Eds.), Structural Aspects of International Migration: Dynamics of Regular Flows. Amsterdam: IMISCOE – University of Amsterdam Press.

Gemenne F. (2008) “ Coping with Desertification : Migration as a Forced Choice and a Livelihood Strategy ” in Ozer A. and Swinne D. (Eds) Desertification : Migration, Health, Remediation and Local Governance. Brussels : Royal Academy for Overseas Sciences and United Nations, pp. 41-54.

Gemenne F. (2008) “ Panorama des principaux axes de la recherche sur le changement climatique ”, Critique Internationale 40 : 141-152.

Gemenne F. (2002) “ La Pieuvre et l’Eléphant – L’emprise de la Droite religieuse sur le Parti républicain  américain ”, Fédéralisme Régionalisme, Vol. 2 : 2001-2002 - Extrême droite et fédéralisme



Back to top