Analysing Discourses - Analysing Future Politics. a Study of Discourses on Climate-Related Migration in Bangladesh

Friday, July 18, 2014: 4:15 PM
Room: F204
Oral Presentation
Alice BAILLAT , Political Science, Sciences Po Paris/CERI, Paris, France
Discourses on climate-related migration have recently emerged in Bangladesh and haven gained a higher profile in the broader climate change discourse of this vulnerable country. More than 60 semi-structured interviews have been conducted in Bangladesh from 2011 to 2013 with a broad range of social actors and stakeholders - including practitioners, bureaucrats, elected representatives, journalists, NGOs – that are involved in a field concerned with displacements due to climate change hazards (disaster management, migration management, development planning, etc). The analysis of these empirical data with a discourse analysis software (Iramuteq) gives some interesting results to understand how those discourses are constructed depending on the social authority of the producers, their professional and individual background and their institutional constraints. This discursive analysis, that combines both quantitative and qualitative methods, also aims to draw a mapping of those discourses and to identify the motivations and intentions behind them.

Refering to a discourse analysis perspective – in particular the Critical Discourse Analysis perspective – seems particularly relevant to understand how climate-related migration are perceived in Bangladesh and how those discourses shape the future national policy response (or, on the contrary, the lack of  policy interventions). In other terms, how those discourses, that are constructed or even manipulated, shape future climate-related migration scenarios and the policies tailored to these new challenges.  

Finally, this paper explores – through an original discourse analysis - the importance of problem-framing and social determinants that influence the emergence (or the non-emergence) of a new public problem and its political aspects. Using a set of concepts and methods from different disciplines – sociology of organisations, sociology of public problem, political science, linguistic etc -, it also invites to transcend disciplinary boundaries and to develop an innovative thinking.