Adaptive Social Protection, Human Capital, and Climate Change: Identifying Policy Priorities for Indonesia

Climate change, and its associated impacts, threatens to reverse decades of global progress in improving people’s health, human capital accumulation, and poverty reduction. At the same time, individuals and households with more human capital and are better positioned to withstand climate change impacts. Several studies have established a correlation between higher human capital with faster disaster preparedness and recovery. These challenges are particularly pressing for Indonesia, where the poor are disproportionately affected by climate shocks. The disproportionate impact of climate change on poor households, and those vulnerable to poverty, signals the importance of social protection as a critical interlocutor to help address the pressing threat of climate change and climate shocks. This background paper outlines the important relationship between human capital development and climate change adaptation; and the needs and opportunities for improving the adaptiveness of Indonesia’s social protection system.