Date of Completion


Thesis Type

College of Arts and Science Honors


Political Science

First Advisor

Peter Henne


climate change, conflict, darfur, syria


As the impacts of climate change grow more apparent, policy makers and scholars have become increasingly interested in the relationship between climate change and conflict, but their analyses have shown ambiguous results. In this thesis, I analyze this relationship in two cases: the Sudan Darfur Conflict (2003-present) and the Syrian Civil War (2011-present). I argue that climate change functioned as an intermediate variable in each case, influencing other factors known to have contributed to the conflict. I find that climate change would have been unlikely to cause either conflict in isolation. Rather, climate change exacerbated the conflicts by making the factors that led to them more severe.