Loss and Damage (L&D) has been the subject of contentious debate in international climate policy for several decades. Recently, formal mechanisms on L&D have been established, but arguably through unclear language. This ambiguity is politically important, but researchers and practitioners require clearer understandings of L&D.
Here we report on the first in-depth empirical study of actor perspectives, including interviews with 38 key stakeholders in research, practice, and policy.
We find points of agreement and also important distinctions in terms of: the relationship between L&D and adaptation, the emphasis on avoiding versus addressing L&D, the relevance of anthropogenic climate change, and the role of justice.
A typology of four perspectives is identified, with different implications for research priorities and actions to address L&D.
This typology enables improved understanding of existing perspectives and so has potential to facilitate more transparent discussion of the options available to address L&D.