Community based adaptation (CBA) : financing local adaptation

The focus of CBA is on empowering communities to take action based on their own knowledge, needs and decision-making processes.


Community-based adaptation (CBA) recognizes that environmental knowledge, vulnerability and resilience to climate change impacts are embedded in societies and cultures. This means that communities already possess much of the knowledge and skills required to cope with the expected impacts of climate change, and can often increase their resilience to climate stresses by building on these. What they lack are the resources and supportive policies that enable them to take action. The focus of CBA is thus on empowering communities to take action based on their own knowledge, needs and decision-making processes.

CBA is a relatively new field of practice and learning. Sharing experience and knowledge from projects and programmes amongst practitioners, policymakers, researchers, governments, funders and the communities at risk is essential. In view of this, the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) in collaboration with the Bangladesh Centre for Advanced Studies (BCAS) began a series of conferences in 2005.

This report is the proceedings of the Eighth International Conference on Community-Based Adaptation to Climate Change, held in Kathmandu, Nepal, 24-30 April 2014, comprising the session summaries. The theme was “Financing Local Adaptation” in recognition of the need to understand how best to finance the growing number of CBA project and programme activities. Roughly 450 people from 58 different countries attended, including representatives from governments and many of the large international and bilateral funds, donors and foundations currently supporting CBA. The conference objectives were to:

  • Bring together different stakeholders and practitioners to share and discuss knowledge of CBA planning and practices;
  • Capture and share the latest experiences and learning from CBA planning and practices, especially on mainstreaming CBA into national and international planning and financing CBA;
  • Enhance the capacity of practitioners to help those most vulnerable to climate change improve their livelihoods;
  • Disseminate lessons learnt at the conference through published proceedings, and wide online and media coverage.

This report has been produced by IIED for the UK Department for International Development (DFID) Adaptation Knowledge and Tools programme and published through Evidence on Demand.

The Adaptation Knowledge and Tools programme is a DFID-funded programme intended to maximise the effectiveness of UK and international investment in climate change adaptation and resilience. The knowledge and tools generated through this programme are expected to promote greater understanding of what constitutes best practice in adaptation, as well as better international cohesion and coordination around adaptation. Through these entry points the programme expects to increase the quality of international and UK adaptation programming and reduce its risk.


Reid, H.; Fenton, A.; Kirkby, P.; Parry, E.; Roberts, E.; Smith, B.; Stott, C.; Stubbings, A.; Totton, J.; Wilson, K.; Wright, H. (Editors) Community based adaptation: financing local adaptation. 8th International Conference, 24-30 April 2014, Kathmandu, Nepal, Conference Proceedings. IIED, London, UK (2015) 64 pp.

Community based adaptation: financing local adaptation

Published 1 January 2015