A view over the Mesaoria plain, Cyprus (C. Nehme)

This project investigates the interaction between climate change and social responses since the medieval period in a poorly studied region, specifically the island of Cyprus, and uses new indicators for both climate and social vulnerability. On one hand, natural archives such as speleothems provide quantitative hydrological and temperature data to complete existing dendrochronology data as well as compiled weather data for the last century. On the other hand, compiled public health archives of mortality, diseases, famine breakouts with past rural/urban landscape records for the last 900 years offer new indicators to analyze social responses to changes in climatic/environmental backgrounds. 

From available historical data and paleoclimatic archives in Cyprus, a detailed reconstruction of each component of factors (climatic/environmental, demographic, political context, land use, health) will be determined for the last 900 years. This assessment will be used to construct scenarios of social vulnerability and disease breakouts. The modelled scenarios will be verified using an independent agent-based model approach. Therefore, three research themes organise the project under three work packages

WP1 : Landscape and climate of the Near-East and Cyprus – reconstruction palaeoquantitative temperature and rainfall estimation and modelling Climate maps. 

WP2: Social indicators of sanitary conditions in Cyprus: vulnerability, insularity vs regional connections 

WP3: Modeling the pathogenesis’ evolution under various conditions and constraints