Community-based adaptation (CBA) conference archive

IIED and its partners have organised a series of international conferences on community-based adaptation (CBA) to enable practitioners, governments and donors to share latest developments and best practice.

Article, 01 May 2015
Community-based adaptation
A programme of work showing how IIED is supporting a community of practice and advancing knowledge on community-based adaptation to climate change, and promoting South-South collaboration
CBA conferences logo

CBA conferences logos

Community-based adaptation to climate change (CBA) focuses on empowering communities to use their own knowledge and decision-making processes to take action on climate change. 

The CBA conferences aim to:

  • Share and consolidate the latest developments in CBA best practice, policy and theory across different sectors and countries
  • Strengthen existing networks of practitioners, policymakers, planners and donors working on CBA at all levels, and
  • Enhance the capacity of practitioners, governments and donors to help those most vulnerable to climate change.

This page provides a summary of CBA conferences to date. The video below, and on IIED's YouTube channel, illustrates some key quotes and images from the 10 conferences since January 2005.

CBA16: Online, 3-4 September 2022

The 16th conference in 2022 was virtual for the third year in a row and focused on putting the principles for locally led adaptation into practice.

CBA15: Online, 14-18 June 2021

Following the success of the online event in 2020, the 2021 conference again took place online, from 14-18 June. Daily updates were provided and the key messages were distilled in a post-event blog.

CBA14: Online, 21-25 September 2020

The 2020 conference took place online from 21-25 September, allowing the community of practice to continue to meet despite the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Read the key messages from the event and the daily updates.

Ahead of the conference, IIED and partners hosted an online event to ignite discussion, and showcase CBA’s themes and interactive, participatory approach to online events. 

CBA13: Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 2019 (1-4 April)

CBA13 in Ethiopia had three central themes: climate finance, adaptation technology and policy engagement. Read coverage of the event and the key messages.

CBA12: Lilongwe, Malawi, 2018 (11-14 June)

IIED brought a new approach to CBA12, with a new format of workshops and dialogue sessions that were designed to allow participants to share  experiences in order to develop practical solutions for getting locally-driven climate adaptation into policy, and to explore innovative ways for financing these solutions.

CBA11: Kampala, Uganda, 2017 (26-29 June)

The focus of the 11th International Conference on Community-Based Adaptation was on harnessing natural resources and ecosystems for adaptation.

CBA10: Dhaka, Bangladesh, 2016 (21-28 April)

The focus of the 10th International Conference on Community-Based Adaptation was 'enhancing urban community resilience'. It concluded with a call for governments, NGOs and infrastructure investors to work with urban community federations to mainstream and finance local adaptation.

CBA9: Nairobi, Kenya, 2015 (24-30 April)

The 9th International Conference on Community-Based Adaptation focused on 'Measuring and enhancing effective adaptation'. The conference concluded with the release of the Nairobi Declaration on community-based adaptation to climate change, which calls for developed nations to step up support for vulnerable countries as they work to meet ambitious goals for climate change adaptation.

CBA8: Kathmandu, Nepal, 2014 (24-30 April)

The 8th international Community-Based Adaptation conference was themed 'Financing local adaptation'. Over 400 people from more than 60 countries attended. The conference concluded with the launch of the Kathmandu Declaration on financing local adaptation, which calls for a radical shift in finance flows to ensure the most vulnerable communities can adapt to climate change.

CBA7: Dhaka, Bangladesh, 2013 (18-25 April)

CBA7 focused on 'Mainstreaming CBA into national and local planning'. The conference closing session featured a video address by Christiana Figueres, executive secretary of the UNFCCC, as well as speeches by Mary Robinson, former President of Ireland; Camilla Toulmin, director of IIED; and Pauline Tamesis, country director, UNDP Bangladesh.

CBA6: Hanoi, Vietnam, 2012 (16-22 April)

The theme of CBA6 was 'Communicating CBA'. The conference featured a variety of communications-related sessions on topics such as blogging, working with the media, photo storytelling, using games to communicate risk, and tools for working with children. Another focus was outreach, with live interviews broadcast online each day and delegates writing almost 30 blog posts and nearly 2,000 tweets. 

CBA5: Dhaka, Bangladesh, 2011 (28-31 March)

Bangladesh's Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina stressed the importance of mutual learning when she gave the opening address at CBA5 in Dhaka on 28 March 2011. The conference theme was  "Scaling up: beyond pilots", emphasising the need to spread CBA knowledge across communities and also vertically across levels of governance and action. 

CBA4: Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, 2010 (21-27 February)

The 4th international CBA conference was held in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, and focused on sharing the latest developments in CBA practices, particularly work in vulnerable communities. Participants set up numerous working groups and agreed to develop the Global Initiative on Community-Based Adaptation (GICBA), a network which seeks to support CBA-related activities by through knowledge-sharing.

CBA3: Dhaka, Bangladesh 2009 (18-24 February)

Delegates to CBA3 agreed to set up a new initiative to share best practice on climate change adaptation. The conference in Dhaka brought together more than 140 people from 50 countries, and the conference programme featured some 60 presentations on the latest developments in CBA practice.  

CBA2: Dhaka, Bangladesh, 2007 (24-28 February)

The 2nd international CBA conference featured three days of technical sessions and interactive discussions as well as field visits to four different locations in Bangladesh, including flood and drought-prone regions. Technical sessions addressed agriculture, drought, food security, extreme events, health, mainstreaming and partnership, and communication and knowledge. 

CBA1: Dhaka, Bangladesh, 2005 (January)

More than 80 experts, policymakers, NGO representatives and grassroots practitioners attended the 1st International Conference on Community-Based Adaptation. The main aim of this first meeting was to define the concept of CBA and to find ways of gaining acceptance for it.