Kayly Ober

Research Associate/ PhD

RG Environment, Migration, Resilience


Department of Geography

Bonn University

Meckenheimer Allee 166

53115 Bonn



Meckenheimer Allee 176, 3.Floor, Room 3009


Tel.: +49.(0)228.73-60220

E-Mail: [Email protection active, please enable JavaScript.]

Consultation hours: on appointment


Social Media





Website: www.transre.org


Research InterestsPoster Policy

Migration, climate change adaptation, resilience, disaster risk management/recovery, gender, peacebuilding, human security.


Dissertation Project

Governing translocal social resilience.

I am currently a research associate with the research group “Environment, Migration, Resilience” (TransRe). My work will focus on the governance of climate change adaptation and migration. I will carry out a detailed multi-level policy and stakeholder analysis (Eckerberg & Joas 2004) to help guide policy dialogue and suggest how migration and translocality can be mainstreamed into climate-change adaptation policies. read more...


I have over 5 years of experience in the intersections of climate change, migration, adaptation, and security. I have been a consultant with the Climate Change Group at the World Bank, a consultant with the Climate Change and Environment Programme at the Overseas Development Institute, and a programme assistant at the Environmental Change and Security Program of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. While at the Wilson Center, I often wrote on climate change and migration for the award-winning blog New Security Beat. I have also worked with the Electricity Governance Initiative at the World Resources Institute and served as an administrative and programme assistant at the International Labor Rights Forum. While studying abroad in Chile, I assisted newly arrived refugees with the Catholic Church of Santiago, La Vicaria de Pastoral Social y de los Trabajadores. I hold an MSc in environment and development (Distinction) from the London School of Economics and a BA in international studies (cum laude) from American University. I am fluent in Spanish.


Ober, K. and Sakdapolrak, P. (2017) How do social practices shape policy? Analysing the field of ‘migration as adaptation’ with Bourdieu's ‘Theory of Practice.’ The Geographical Journal, Early View.

Sterly, H., Ober, K., Sakdapolrak, P. (2016) Migration for Human Security? The Contribution of Translocality to Social Resilience. Georgetown Journal of Asian Affairs, 3(1), 57-66.

Sakdapolrak, P., Naruchaikosol, S., Ober, K., Peth, S., Porst, L., Rockenbauch, T., Tolo, V. (2016) Migration in a changing climate. Towards a translocal social resilience approach. DIE ERDE, 147(2), 81-94.

Ober, K. (2014). How the IPCC views migration. An assessment of migration in the IPCC AR5. TransRe Fact Sheet No. 1, Department of Geography, University of Bonn, Germany.

Ober, K. (2014). Migration as adaptation: exploring mobility as a coping strategy for climate change. UK Climate Change and Migration Coalition, Oxford, UK.

Ober, K. (2010). Meeting the Needs of Latin America's Rural and Urban Populations, Point of View, Centerpoint. Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Washington, DC.


Ober, K. (2017). "The King, Coups, and IOs...Oh my! Climate change adaptation policy assemblages in Thailand", American Association of Geographers Annual Conference, Boston, MA, 8.4.17

Ober, K. (2016). "The governance of "migration as adaptation": (dis)entangling power and politics with Bourdieu's Theory of Practice", American Association of Geographers Annual Conference, San Francisco, CA, 28.03.16

Ober, K. & Porst, L. (2014). “Building Resilience Through Translocality, Climate Change, Migration and Social Resilience in Rural Thailand”, Multilocality in the Global South and North: Factors, features and policy implications, TU Dortmund, 18.9.2014

Ober, K. (2014). “Migration as Adaptation: reality or rhetoric? The influence of sedentary bias on climate adaptation funding”, Parallel Worlds? Environmental Change, Regional Adaptation and the Role of Migration, University of Cologne, 4.7.2014


TransRe Short Course | "Does Migration Move You? The impacts of climate change on migration and the concepts, methods, and policies behind them”, Chiang Mai, Thailand, 26.06.15