ICSU, together with NASAC and the ISSC, will support 10 research projects across Africa. These projects are expected to generate new solutions-oriented knowledge that will help develop new urban paradigms in Africa and make African cities more resilient, adaptable and healthier. This is the first call in a five-year, 5 million Euro project that seeks to increase the production of high quality, integrated (inter- and transdisciplinary), solutions-oriented research on global sustainability by early career scientists in Africa.
Cities in developing countries have grappled with spatial planning, infrastructure, housing and, more recently, fragmented and “runaway” development. Spatial plans largely remain at a strategic level and less at the neighborhood scale, where there is a disjuncture between the envisioned urban layout and the actual development (Lwasa, 2013). The coupling of these multiple challenges has rendered planning a failure, resulting in a continued organic development of “informal” cities with diverse infrastructure and services that contrast with centralized systems used as the benchmark for measuring progress of a formal city. In this article, I postulate that the “informal city” is actually the city. Continue reading →
The Future Earth Secretariat has today released a call for proposals to establish Regional Offices for Future Earth in Africa. This call follows the establishment of Future Earth Global Hubs and Regional Centres in many other regions of the world.
In light of the urgency of establishing a Future Earth presence in Africa, Regional Offices are intended to provide a foundation for the later creation of a Regional Centre for Africa at one of the offices.
A Selection Committee consisting of representatives of the African Future Earth Committee (AFEC), Future Earth Science and Engagement Committees and Secretariat and an independent external representative of the African Science Community is being established. The Committee intends to complete the selection process by December 2015.
The deadline for submission of proposals is October 28th 2015.
Download background document and template for proposals:
This chapter is a counterpoint to those in the rest of this volume that treat Africa’s large cities. As Simon (Int Dev Plann Rev 36(2):v–xi, 2014) has observed, most study of African urban climate change adaptation has focused on the challenges to large cities. So, by way of heuristic exercise, we attempt to approach a set of questions about small African cities and towns facing climate change. What climate-related hazards are faced by small cities in Africa today and will be confronted in the future? What kind of enabling capacities should be strengthened so that staff in small cities can take the initiative to adapt to climate change? What obstacles do the governments and residents of small cities face in adapting to climate change? What potential is there for risk reduction and improved livelihood security even in the face of climate change? Reviewing literature and using case studies from Eastern, Southern and Western Africa, we find that small cities have potential not only to protect their infrastructure and residents from climate related hazards, but also to serve as catalysts of climate-smart development in their hinterlands. However, governance problems and a lack of finance severely limit the ability of small African cities to realise this potential. More research is urgently needed to inform feasible solutions to bridge these governance and funding gaps.