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WASCAL

The West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL) project is a large-scale research-focused programme initiated to develop effective adaptation and mitigation measures to climate change. The geographical focus of WASCAL is on West Africa with in-depth research in case study watersheds in Benin, Burkina Faso and Ghana.

WASCAL is based on three principle components: a Competence Center, a core Research Programme and a Graduate Research Programme. The Competence Center will contribute to the development of local research capacity, and serve as a service center for the partner countries, building on the national research communities of the West African countries participating in WASCAL.

The Core Research Programme relates to the scientific activities of the Competence Center, and is implemented by a network of German and West African research institutes. Within the Core Research Programme, UNU-EHS will investigate the linkages between climate change and the state and security of rural livelihoods in West Africa.

The Graduate Studies Programme involves the creation of six Doctoral programs and four Master’s programs in West Africa, which contribute to the education of the next generation of African scientists and policymakers in the field of climate change and land management.

For detailed information please visit: www.wascal.org

Time span

Planning phase: August 2011 - September 2012 

Research phase: October 2012 - February 2016 

Key goals

The main objective of WASCAL is to enhance the resilience of social-ecological systems to the impacts of climate change and increased climate variability. Specific objectives of the work undertaken at UNU-EHS are: 

  • to identify, characterize and quantify major climate change-related hazards to rural households/communities at different spatial and temporal scales

  • to determine the probability of occurrence and potential intensity of those hazards

  • to analyse rural households’ exposure, vulnerabilities and risks to rapid onset and creeping hazards in the context of climate change

  • to explore potential coping and adaptation strategies in order to reduce the overall vulnerability and risk and increase the resilience to the identified hazards.

Expected outcomes

UNU-EHS coordinates a work package on Risk Assessment and Analysis within WASCAL, which aims to identify social groups among rural households that are the most affected by the consequences of climate change and related environmental hazards, to explore their coping and adaptation possibilities and to develop a multi-hazard risk assessment approach at multiple scales. Using in-situ data, household surveys and remotely sensed data climate induced risks mainly focusing on floods and droughts will be assessed.

Important outcomes of the research will be exposure, vulnerability and risk profiles at various spatial scales for Burkina Faso, Ghana and Benin. Furthermore, based on the research conducted within this Work Package, recommendations on suitable coping and adaptation strategies will be derived.

Publications

Asare-Kyei, D., Kloos, J., Renaud, F. (2013) Participatory approaches to develop indicators for multiple risk assessment linking different scales in West African Social-Ecological Systems under climate change. Proceedings of 2nd Android Annual Conference, Limassol, Cyprus, October  23 to 25, 2013.

     News

    1. Call for applications: MSc Thesis

      The Department of Ecology and Natural Resources Management of the Center for Development Research (ZEF) offers a MSc thesis opportunity on:

      Evaluation of locally developed climate change farming coping measures in the Western African Sudan savannah: agroforestry |Read more

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      Call for applications: MSc Thesis

      The Department of Ecology and Natural Resources Management of the Center for Development Research (ZEF) offers a MSc thesis opportunity on:

      Evaluation of locally developed climate change farming coping measures in the Western African Sudan savannah: subsidized cotton cultivation |Read more

    3. teaser image

      Training module on Disaster Risk Reduction in West Africa: UNU-EHS, UN OCHA ROWCA and the Togolese Red Cross join forces

      From 10 to 21 June 2013 UNU-EHS organized a training module in Lomé, Togo, where 10 students from the WASCAL Project (West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use) were trained on humanitarian coordination and emergency preparedness and response procedures. |Read more

    4. teaser image

      Call for application: WASCAL regional Master's research program

      WASCAL (West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use) is a large-scale research-focused programme designed to tackle climate change and enhance the resilience of human and environmental systems to climate change and increased variability. This is a call for qualified candidates to apply for the Master's research program in climate change and education for the 2013-2014 academic session. Application deadline: 31 May 2013. |Read more

    5. teaser image

      Call for application: WASCAL Master programmes

      WASCAL (West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use) is a large-scale research-focused programme designed to tackle climate change and enhance the resilience of human and environmental systems to climate change and increased variability. This is a call for qualified candidates to apply for the Master programme in climate change and energy for the 2013-2014 academic session. |Read more

    6. teaser image

      Call for application: senior researcher

      Within the framework of the West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL) project, the project management wishes to appoint an experienced scholar with a strong theoretical and empirical background in the study of socio‐ecological systems and population dynamics. Closing date: 25 October 2012.

      Call for application

    7. teaser image

      Apply now for doctoral scholarship!

      Within the framework of the West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL) project, the Center for Development Research (ZEF) offers a doctoral scholarship in the field of “Adaptation Policies for Local Commodity, Service, and Factor Markets in West Africa”.

      Call: PhD scholarship

    8. Call for application: WASCAL Master programmes

      WASCAL (West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use) is a large-scale research-focused programme designed to help tackle climate change and thereby enhance the resilience of human and environmental systems to climate change and increased variability. This is a call for qualified candidates to apply for the Master programmes in climate change and human security as well as climate change and adapted land use for the 2012-2013 academic session. |Read more

    9. WASCAL project: Apply now for doctoral scholarships

      The Center for Development Research in Bonn, Germany, offers two doctoral scholarships in the field of "Forestry based Carbon Markets" and "Valuation of Ecosystem Services" in rural West Africa. The scholarships are part of the newly created West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL). Application deadline is 30 April 2012. |Read more

    10. The WASCAL project - a concerted response to climate change

      The BMBF-funded West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL) project is a large project being conducted by UNU-EHS together with a variety of German, African and international project partners. Dr. Fabrice Renaud, WASCAL focal point at UNU-EHS, talks in this interview about the project´s settings and details. |Read more

    Partner organizations

    Please view a full list of partners at the official WASCAL website.

    Funded by

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    Contact

    • Dr. Fabrice Renaud

    • Tel.: + 49-228-815-0211

    • e-mail: