This projects aims to improve the capacity of regional climate models to predict, assess and respond to disasters and undertake knowledge exchange and capacity building exercises for their use locally by diverse stakeholders. The research is being carried out in collaboration with our project partners at Pennsylvania State University (Professor Mike Jacobson), the University of Sao Paulo (Professor Adelaide Nardocci) and local collaborators in India, Tanzania and Ethiopia.
  • Dates2020-2023
  • SponsorBelmont Forum/EPSRC
  • Funded€1,070,000
  • PartnersPennsylvania State University, University of Sao Paulo, Mekelle University, Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee, UN Centre for Human Settlements, Water Institute

Humanitarian disasters such as droughts expose approximately 10 million people in Sub-Saharan Africa to food, water and energy insecurity. Besides the humanitarian consequences, disasters such as floods also heighten investment risks due to the creation of 'stranded assets' like wastewater treatment plants in developing countries.

Global climate models can be used to identify the geographical distribution of disaster risk but without being able to specify the regional intensity, frequency and duration of events. In Sub-Saharan Africa, the difference between what models forecast and the reality of dryness has come to be known as the 'East Africa Climate paradox'. Because of model inconsistency, it is difficult for investors and decision makers to be forewarned about impending events and to respond when they occur.

The overall aim of this Theory of Change Observatory on Disaster Resilience (TOCO_DR) project will therefore be to enhance the capacity to develop, pilot-test and validate regional climate models that enable the prediction, assessment and response to effects of droughts and flood risk.