Given their low levels of capital, human and technological development, the world’s least developed countries (LDCs) are particularly vulnerable to climate change. At the same time they are highly likely to be severely affected by natural disasters. This report provides an introduction to the specific difficulties that LDCs face in a climate change context, with particular attention to climate impacts and vulnerability.

The report includes chapters on climate change and LDCs, adaptation and vulnerability to climate change. Particularly comprehensive are the sections on the definition of adaptation, and the role of adaptation in the Framework Convention on Climate Change and its subsequent negotiations.

There are also two case studies that shed light on the details of adaptation in Bangladesh and Mali, highlighting impact studies and projected changes, as well as sectoral responses. The last chapter on ‘lessons learned’ is essential reading for anyone interested in bringing adaptation into the mainstream of development policy, and its potential future role in climate policy.