AXA Research Fund has awarded its first research chair in Africa to the University of Cape Town. The new chair, in African Climate Risk, will be held by Professor Mark New, director of the African Climate and Development Initiative (ACDI). Worth R20.65 million (€1.35 million) over 15 years, the chair aims to make a significant change in the research field of African climate risk.
There is nothing like a major climate disaster to raise interest in the problem of climate change among farming communities. The current severe drought appears to have made the penny drop and role players are scrambling to deal with the crisis while assessing what needs to be done to create greater resilience. The message that more frequent climate disasters like droughts can be expected in future is also being taken seriously.
The ACDI, on behalf of the UCT climate change community, has been successful in a Newton Fund (NRF/RCUK) application for a PhD Partnering Programme on Climate Change between The University of Cape Town (UCT) and the University of East Anglia (UEA). The aim of the partnership is to bring PhD students and their supervisors from both institutions together through visits of students and staff between the institutions. In addition to benefits for individual students, there is also a strategic aim of fostering long term collaborations between research groups and individuals.