Diana Sietz

I am a Geo-Ecologist with a long-term research experience in vulnerability of socio-ecological systems, the development of adaptation strategies and institutional analyses. My research has centred on the investigation of smallholder livelihoods in drylands with regard to food security and global change. In particular, I have revealed major mechanisms which generate vulnerability to climate variability, price fluctuations and other perturbations. Thereby, the transfer of options to adapt to perturbations and inter-linkages between local and global scales receive particular attention. Moreover, my work includes development of approaches to integrate case study knowledge with modelling techniques. I have extensive regional and fieldwork experience in Latin America and Africa, in particular in the Peruvian Andes, Northeast Brazil, Mozambique and western Africa.

I have contributed to high-level flagship reports of international and national organisations including UNEP and the German Advisory Council on Global Change, to priority setting in the European research agenda of JPI CLIMATE and delivered key note lectures to UNFCCC and the Annual Reporting and Exchange Platform for Climate Change Management (Peru).

gec-2014 - climate adaptation.

Regionalisation of global insights into dryland vulnerability: Northeast Brazil

Global analyses of vulnerability reveal generic insights into the relation between socio-ecological systems and the stress impacting upon them including climate & market variability. 

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gec 2015 first page - climate adaptation.

Land-based adaptation to global change: What drives soil and water conservation in western Africa?

Conservation of land resources is a promising strategy for sustainable agricultural intensification in order to adapt dryland farming systems to climate, market and other stresses. Go to abstract.

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51d6bf041cd5cp1020204-gregorio-fernandez - climate adaptation.

Dryland vulnerability - Typical patterns and dynamics in support of vulnerability reduction efforts


The pronounced constraints on ecosystem functioning and human livelihoods in drylands are frequently exacerbated by natural and socio-economic stresses, including weather extremes and...

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51da93f7ae10apicture-6 - climate adaptation.

Smallholder agriculture in Northeast Brazil


Northeast Brazil is characterised by large natural and socio-economic variance, recurrent droughts and widespread rural poverty. To capture spatial heterogeneity in this region, a...

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51db2345d058cscreen-shot-2013-07-08-at-21 - climate adaptation.

Mainstreaming climate adaptation into development assistance

Fig.1: Sub-national distribution of average annual climate-sensitive ODA (2006) from five main donors (Data source: ODAmoz 2009)


In Mozambique, weather extremes threaten...

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51da9e7ad8e36map5 - climate adaptation.

Transfer of adaptation strategies in global drylands: Insights from a typology of vulnerability

Spatial distribution of vulnerability patterns in global drylands. Exemplary case studies are mapped that validate cluster-specific mechanisms and provide entry points to...

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