Author Archives: Katharine Vincent

Kulima participating in new project “Bridging national strategy on sustainable development of water-energy-food systems to local scale needs in Malawi”

Kulima is proud to announce that we are part of a new project "Bridging national strategy on sustainable development of water-energy-food systems to local scale needs in Malawi" that has been funded by the GCRF Collective Programme 'Clusters’ Call to take place from June 2020-May 2021. The project is led by the University of Southampton with LEAD SEAFANRPAN, the Universities of Leeds and Manchester and Kulima Integrated Development Solutions, builds on three existing GCRF GROW projects – BRECcIA, AFRICAP, FutureDams – with the aim of enhancing equity of rural people’s key participatory roles in shaping and making policy work in order to bridge the gap between national scale priorities/strategies and gender-sensitive local scale needs, including environmental sustainability.

Future Climate For Africa and CDKN release guide on how to contribute climate change information to Wikipedia, with inputs from Kulima

Future Climate For Africa and CDKN have just released How to contribute climate change information to Wikipedia: A guide for researchers, practitioners and communicators. The guide, by Emma Baker, Lisa McNamara, Beth Mackay and Kulima director, Dr Katharine Vincent, builds on Africa's first Wikipedia edit-a-thon on climate change in Africa, held in August 2019. The guide targets researchers, practitioners, communicators and any others with access to climate change information who would like to share it more widely with the world. It outlines how to edit Wikipedia, along with tips and suggestions on style and structure, and guidance on how to get involved with the Wikipedia editing community.

Building Resilience and Adapting to Climate Change in Malawi commemorates International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction

The Building Resilience and Adapting to Climate Change programme in Malawi, in which Kulima is part of the Knowledge and Policy Hub, commemorated International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction last week by releasing a brief and other pieces. The brief, a joint output with the Civil Society Network on Climate Change (CISONECC), addresses "Why invest in resilience?" and consolidates existing evidence for the cost-effectiveness of investing in disaster risk reduction and resilience-building. This was accompanied by a blog on the CDKN website "Spotlight this Disaster Risk Reduction Day on Malawi" and opinion article in the Daily Times Malawi "Why Disaster Risk Reduction is more important than ever" – both of which highlight the need to finalise the DRM Bill and create a budget line for Disaster Risk Reduction in the country.  

“Evolution of national climate adaptation agendas in Malawi, Tanzania and Zambia: the role of national leadership and international donors” now published-with inputs from Kulima

An output of the Future Climate For Africa UMFULA project has just been published. "Evolution of national climate adaptation agendas in Malawi, Tanzania and Zambia: the role of national leadership and international donors" unpacks the ways in which political economy has affected the emergence and evolution of national climate adaptation planning in three sub-Saharan African countries over the last decade, based on data collection over a six year period. Despite variation in the specifics of how they operated, the roles of two factors in common emerge in the evolution of the climate change adaptation agendas: national leadership and allied political priorities, and the role of additional funding provided by donors. These influences lead to changes in the policy and institutional frameworks for addressing climate change, as well as in the emphasis placed on climate change adaptation. By examining the different ways through which ideas, power and resources converge and by learning from the specific configurations in the country examples, the paper identifies opportunities to address existing barriers to action and thus present implications that enable more effective adaptation planning in other countries. 

“Managing collaborative research: insights from a multi-consortium programme on climate adaptation across Africa and South Asia” now published-with inputs from Kulima

Another paper has just been produced that reflects on the process of conducting collaborative applied adaptation research under the Collaborative Adaptation Research in Africa and Asia (CARIAA) programme. "Managing collaborative research: insights from a multi-consortium programme on climate adaptation across Africa and South Asia", led by Bruce-Currie Alder with Georgina Cundill, Lucia Scodanibbio, Kulima director Katharine Vincent, Anjal Prakash and Nathalie Nathe, reflects on CARIAA's learnings in fostering cooperation towards research outcomes, coordinating Participants valued the consortium as a network that provided connections with distinct sources of expertise, as a means to gain experience and skills beyond the remit of their home organisation. Consortia were seen as an avenue for reaching scale both in terms of working across regions, as well as in terms of moving research into practice. The experience of CARIAA affirms documented strategies for collaborative research, including project vision, partner compatibility, skilled managers, and multi-level planning. Collaborative research also needs an ability to revise membership and structures as needed in response to changing involvement of partners over time.

“Addressing power imbalances in co-production” New comment in Nature Climate Change, led by Kulima

A new comment "Addressing power imbalances in co-production" has just been published in Nature Climate Change. The comment, led by Katharine Vincent with Suzanne Carter, Anna Steynor, Emma Visman and Katinka Lund Waagsaether, reflects on investigations into co-production in the Future Climate For Africa and WISER programmes. Co-production is an increasingly popular approach to knowledge generation encouraged by donors and research funders. However, power dynamics between institutions in the global North and South can, if not adequately managed, impede the effectiveness of co-production and pose risks for long-term sustainability.

Kulima participating in leadership training for African Academy of Sciences Future Leaders (FLAIR) Fellows

Kulima and START are collaborating with the African Academy of Sciences to run science leadership training for the Future Leaders-Africa Independent Research (FLAIR) fellows. The training, taking place last week and this week online in a variety of sessions, addresses how to uncover and nurture innate leadership potential. This involves combining insights into personality and emotional intelligence and how these can be used to effectively communicate, negotiate, pitch, network with insights on managing research and developing effective research career strategies.  

“Understanding gender differences in availability, accessibility and use of climate information among smallholder farmers in Malawi” New paper from the UMFULA project with inputs from Kulima

A new paper "Understanding gender differences in availability, accessibility and use of climate information among smallholder farmers in Malawi" has just been published in Climate and Development. The paper, led by Dr Rebecka Henriksson with inputs from Katharine Vincent, is an output of the Future Climate For Africa UMFULA project. Ensuring smallholder farmers have access to climate information is important to enable adaptation, but access to it is strongly gendered. This study shows that both women prefer radio to access forecasts, but that women also like to access forecasts through a knowledge broker. Those farmers with higher levels of education (mostly men) prefer to also obtain forecasts via internet and cell phone. Understanding gendered preferences and barriers to climate information access is crucial for benefits of adaptation to be accessed equitably.

“Re-balancing climate services for climate-resilient planning” New paper from the UMFULA project, led by Kulima

A new paper "Re-balancing climate services to inform climate-resilient planning – A conceptual framework and illustrations from sub-Saharan Africa" has just been published in Climate Risk Management. The paper, led by Dr Katharine Vincent, is an output of the Future Climate For Africa UMFULA project. UMFULA aimed to increase the availability and use of medium-term climate information for decision-making in central and southern Africa. Whilst the climate services field has placed a lot of emphasis on generating information that is useful and usable to decision-makers, the "usability gap" has persisted. The paper argues for more attention to be paid to enablers that need to be in place to ensure that useful and usable information is actually used. These enablers include supportive institutions, appropriate policy frameworks, capacity of individuals and agency to make decisions. 

Cost estimate for the implementation of South Africa’s National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy released-with inputs from Kulima

South Africa's Department for Environment, Forestry and Fisheries has just released the Cost Estimate for Implementation of the National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy. The cost estimate was conducted by a team led by Cowater International that included Kulima director, Katharine Vincent, as the climate adaptation expert. The costing relies on an innovative methodology that involved scoping the activities on the short, medium and long timeframe within the 10 year implementation period, then costing them based on available data, accounting for inflation. Costing data is available per intevention, with breakdown by activity, and all assumptions around scope are transparent to show how figures were arrived at.