There is a growing need to reassess resilience assessment methods across Africa to shore up the continent against climate change shocks, conflict and economic upheaval, say development experts and academics from the region.
< An expert meeting convened by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD) on May 23-24 discussed ways to boost Africa's resilience as shocks continue to ravage economies and hamper development.
Mahaman Ali Adam, Niger’s Technical Advisor at the Ministry of Humanitarian Aid and Disaster Management, noted that African countries, particularly in the Sahel, continue to face shocks ranging from conflict to to droughts and floods, both of which are unpredictable and inevitable.
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“Resilience is extremely important in Africa, especially as most of our development gaps are in very sensitive areas such as agriculture, energy, water and transport ecosystems,” said Dr. Linus Mofor of the Africa Climate Policy Centre.
Allessandra Casazza, head of UNDP’s Resilience Hub for Africa, told The EastAfrican that the convention should help the center to find out “what resilience is like on the continent and how we can do better.”
“We have recognized that UNDP alone cannot find an answer to this question; we had to take it to all our partners, and convening this high-level dialogue will help us better understand the resilience ecosystem on the continent,” said Ms. Casazza.
The regional experts, leaders, academics and field staff Various UN agencies, civil society organizations and governments discussed what can be learned from past shocks and how Africa’s resilience to climate change, conflict and economic shocks and other issues affecting the continent could be strengthened. Delegates agreed on the need to increase research, make informed and well-coordinated policy changes, and mobilize funds that go directly to improving resilience.
“If we are to make good use of our collective resources, then research is an important cornerstone to be able to make decisions,” said Paul Ladd, Director of UNRISD.
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