| || || Lala, Jasvin Malani|
| || || A phenomenological exploration of the psychological impacts of climate change : a focus on Funafuti, Tuvalu |
Author:Lala, Jasvin Malani
Institution: University of the South Pacific.
Subject: Climatic changes -- Psychological aspects -- Tuvalu, Climatic changes -- Effect of human beings on -- Tuvalu
Call No.: pac BF 353 .5 .C55 L35 2015
Copyright:10-20% of this thesis may be copied without the authors written permission
Abstract: Pacific island nations such as Tuvalu are already experiencing the effects of climate change which jeopardises their health, mental well-being, food and water security and most importantly their cultural and social identity. They are already struggling to adapt and mitigate the impact of climate change. The purpose of this current exploratory study was to understand the psychological impacts of climate change as experienced by the individuals living in Funafuti, Tuvalu. It also identified the coping strategies used by the respondents to help deal with the psychological impacts of climate change. Purposive sampling was used to select the participants for this study which included participants who were both born and raised in Funafuti, and also those who had resettled in Funafuti from other islands of Tuvalu. Semi structured interviews were used to gain insight into their personal experiences of climate change; psychological impact associated with it and the coping mechanism they used for mitigation. The findings of the current study explicated four major thematic areas: Emotional and Psychological Well-being, Familial Conflict, Coping Strategies, and Experiential effects of Climate Change. These findings show that that climate change has negative health implications which impede the well-being and social dynamics of individuals. It also shows the coping mechanisms that were operationalised from the participant’s personal and cultural constructs. Only recently the role of psychology has been given prominence in relation to climate change, but most studies on the psychosocial impact of climate change are from Westernbased perspective. It is imperative to undertake studies that are culturally contextualised to determine the extent of the psychosocial impacts of climate change and how they can be adapted and mitigated to develop a holistic health and mental well-being framework that encompasses the biological, psychological and social elements for optimal well-being.