The focus areas of SSEESS Research Links can differ from year to year.
Focus area 2016
As part of its mission SSEESS aims to strengthen the collaboration between Swedish scientists and international programmes, initiatives, and organisations working with global environmental change research. Of particular interest are the core projects of Future Earth, a 10-year interdisciplinary research platform aiming to provide the knowledge and support needed to accelerate transformations to a sustainable world (see: www.futureearth.org/projects for more information).
To encourage scientists from Sweden and developing countries to be engaged in current Future Earth activities, SSEESS provided planning grants for consortia based on Swedish based researchers and researcher in developing countries, to prepare proposals for projects that can be linked to the above mentioned core projects.
In the review of the applications special attention was given to:
Contact person: Dr Alyssa Joyce, University of Gothenburg
Future Earth Core Project: Integrated Marine Biogeochemistry and Ecosystem Research (IMBER)
Innovative science is needed to increase the resilience of food production systems in the three ODA least developed countries included as partners on this proposal, as existing aquaculture production and fisheries have fallen short of feeding rapidly growing populations. Aquaculture production has enormous potential to provide alternative livelihoods and food security for growing populations if increased production capacity and efficiencies are approached with a suite of sustainability criteria in mind: i) minimize depletion of non-renewable resources for feed production and concentrate on recycling wastes ii) attain better feed conversion ratios iii) increase utilization of lower trophic-level species iv) utilize species that are able to adapt under climate change. During the 5-month timeframe for this initial planning grant we will have the opportunity to develop a more comprehensive funding proposal for focused on climate-relevant diversification for improving food security.
Contact Person: Associate Professor Katarina Gårdfeldt, Chalmers University of Technology
Future Earth Core Project: Urbanization and Global Environmental Change (UGEC)
The study is designed to predict the implications of climate change on water related issues in the urban setting of South Delhi and Kochi. These include extremes like enhanced flooding due to increase in intensity of rainfall and extreme stress on the domestic water availability. Population differentiated by socio-economic factors like income, gender, age, which also form the basis of vulnerability will be identified. The study will focus on developing method to predict and quantify the impacts of climate change on the two cities and identify strategies (landuse, mobility planning, and other adaptation alternatives) to reduce vulnerability. The identified strategies will be discussed with experts such as city planners to determine a set of feasible solutions for these risks.
Contact Person: Professor Paul Lane, Uppsala University
Future Earth Core Project: The Integrated History and future of People on Earth (IHOPE)
Current uncertainties regarding future sea level change point to the need for improved integration of antecedent data concerning the operation of natural and anthropogenic processes over long time scales. For coastal ecosystems, a crucial parameter that influences other natural processes and has a direct bearing on human activities is sea-level. Reconstructing past sea levels is thus a critical first step in the reconstruction of the historical ecology of coastal regions, from which other research can follow. East Africa, which is highly vulnerable to future sea level rise, lacks adequate reconstructions of past sea level changes. This Research Network aims to assemble environmental and social scientists to develop a programme of future collaborative research to fill these knowledge gaps.
Contact Person: Professor Magnus Evander, Umeå University.
Future Earth Core Project: ecoHealth
Environmental changes are a common global phenomenon, being driven by multi-faceted factors and whose impact destabilizes ecosystem sustainability. In Kenya, the increasing human population is the force driving the extreme changes in land use practices, which have resulted in destabilizing the ecosystem integrity. For instance, these land use changes have led to increased land fragmentations, loss of wildlife corridors and dispersal areas, encroachment in wildlife areas, decline in biodiversity and greater interactions between wildlife and humans with their livestock. We believe that these environmental changes, sometimes well intended, have profound effect on the health of humans, livestock and wildlife. Many environmental impact assessments carried out usually miss out the linkage of proposed environmental modifications to disease risks. Yet, such modifications do not only have profound effects on the vectors and reservoirs of pathogens, but also on the transmission dynamics and spread. The multi-vectored and multi-host rangelands of Kenya, which is a foci experiencing one of the most dynamic interactions and landscape modifications of our time, is suitable for investigating the pathogen pool, transmission pathways, underlying risks and drivers of diseases and seeking pragmatic mitigations. We anticipate that this funding opportunity will aid the Sweden-Kenya partners to formally create a forum and framework of engagement towards developing long-term research goals that links the environmental changes and health of humans, livestock and wildlife. This collaboration will enable us to build and develop a multi-disciplinary and cross institutional research networks that will support intellectual capacity building and growth between Kenyan and Swedish scientists and to fine tune on areas of future research collaboration.
Contact Person: Professor Hans Westlund, Royal Institute of Technology
Future Earth Core Project: The Earth System Governance Project (ESG)
The aim of this network of researchers and practitioners is to prepare a proposal for tackling complex issues surrounding sanitation, hygiene and human behaviour. Drawing on social and behavioural sciences, we will explore compliance barriers to behavioural change at different levels of society – micro and macro levels and reasons why individuals or groups of individuals do not comply with prescribed sanitation and hygiene standards and guidelines. We will also examine what is being done at different levels of society to tackle these barriers, particularly at individual and household levels using different approaches. We would like to assess the extent to which approaches are effective in improving sanitation conditions and changing hygiene behaviour at the individual and household levels.