Wiley Online Library
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This study investigates local expert perceptions of the role of environmental factors, especially in terms of contemporary climate change, in population movements from Bangladesh to India. The aim is to delve into locally held understandings of the phenomenon and to gain a better understanding of these migration processes, which are actively intertwined with local experiences. Both Indian and Bangladeshi experts were interviewed using semi‐structured, in‐depth interviews in order to explore insights from locally held perceptions and understandings of contextual factors. In total, 10 Bangladeshi and 15 Indian experts were interviewed, covering different disciplines, sectors, regions and job types, together providing a more complete and grounded picture of views of environmentally induced migration in Bangladesh and India. The results show that climate change is perceived by local experts as one of the key factors influencing migration in Bangladesh, both internally and externally. The interviewees, however, placed environmentally induced migration in a broader context of labour and economic migration. In particular, migration for environmental reasons in Bangladesh was evident long before the emergence of climate change as an issue. According to the interviewed experts, this does not preclude increased environmentally induced migration within and from Bangladesh in the future, but its analyses ought to be placed in historical and economical contexts.