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Prof Cornforth at Water Security and Poverty Conference

Monday, April 1, 2019

Professor Rosalind Cornforth chaired a panel session last week, "African climate: knowledge production and decision making", at the REACH programme's Water Security and Poverty conference. The REACH programme is a global programme that is helping to improve water security for the poor through science that transforms policy and practice. This conference hosted leading practitioners and scientists at Keble College Oxford to discuss key results from the REACH programmes in Bagladesh, Kenya and Ethiopia.

Breaking away from traditional presentation format used in many conference settings, this session stimulated small discussion groups around the co-production of knowledge creation and effective communication in interdisciplinary spaces. Each small group had a different key question to discuss, and attendees switched groups after 10 mins to ensure multiple perspectives presented themselves and collided.

The discussion groups were focused around whether co-creation works as a tool, how to communicate uncertainty in climatic predictions and how knowledge can be co-created and shared.

Key ideas which came out from the sessions included the need to generate more usable and suitable forms of climate information, rather than concentrating on making new climate products. There was also a push for blurring the lines between different stakeholders, for climate scientists to work in a more interdisciplinary way.

"We need to build more interdisciplinary bridges to ensure climate information is relevant, actionable and timely."

Closing words by Prof Cornforth