Small scale farming is an important route out of poverty in sub-Saharan Africa. However, some types of farming harm the natural services – soil quality, pest control, and pollination - they rely on. Can farming continue to expand and still stay within the limits of the environment? In Ghana, cocoa farming has improved rural livelihoods but likely already damaged ecosystems, whereas in Ethiopia coffee plantations have not. As well as defining the ecological limits in these two systems, this project will look at the key social processes, and...
ESPA in the News
Below are some recent examples of where ESPA's research has been highlighted by other publications, websites or broadcasts.
ESPA Director Paul van Gardingen is quoted in this Thomson Reuters article on a REDD-backed wildlife corridor between Kenya's Tsavo East and West National Parks.
The University of East Anglia's Development Department ran a feature (p9) in their annual newsletter on videos made by the ESPA funded project 'Just ecosystem management: linking ecosystem services with poverty alleviation'.
A report from the Modern Ghana website about two meetings in Kenya that brought ESPA researchers together with stakeholders and policymakers from across East Africa. Africasti.com also covered the meeting.
A Thomson Reuters Foundation piece on community-run Mangrove conservation in Kenya talks about the Mikoko Pamoja PES scheme which was established by ESPA project Swahili Seas. The article also mentions the project's mangrove mapping work.
As a new round of bird flu hits China, 'panic slowly' is the advice from Delia Grace, zoonoses expert with the Drivers of Disease Consortium. An article from ILRI news.
Gianni Lo Iacono, a mathematical modeller at the University of Cambridge working with the ESPA Drivers of Disease Consortium, wrote this blog for Nature's SoapboxScience website.
This is a Science Omega article on ESPA-funded work looking at dietary deficiencies in Malawi.
Writing in the Guardian, Lina Moses from the ESPA Drivers of Disease consortium asks: why is there no vaccine for Lassa fever?
PI of the ESPA ASSETS project, Guy Poppy, was interviewed for the article 'Food security in the times of climate change' in the wake of the two-day event on food security which he co-organised at the Royal Society.
Environmental Research Web spoke to Emily Wood about ESPA-funded research looking at the feasibility of a biofuel industry in Ghana.
The journal Agricultura de las Américas published an article on British-Colombian co-operation which featured the ESPA ASSETS work in the Amazon region.
James Wood talked about the ESPA Dynamic Drivers of Disease in Africa consortium in an EMBO Reports article titled 'Tackling animal diseases to protect human health'.
Ian Scoones, from the ESPA Dynamic Drivers of Disease in Africa consortium, wrote in The Zimbabwean on the relationships between the testse fly, livestock, wildlife and people - and the potentially dangerous consequences. Ian also carried this on his blog Zimbabweland.
Terry Dawson spoke with Contact magazine about the ESPA Framework project ‘Poverty and ecology: developing a new evolutionary approach’.
ESPA Drivers of Disease consortium featured in Guardian blog
Veterinary epidemiologist Delia Grace, from ESPA's Drivers of Disease consortium, wrote about the aims of the project for The Guardian's Poverty Matters blog.
The Economist blogs on ESPA-funded environmental health index
New DFID publication champions ESPA
The UK Government’s Department for International Development (DFID) recently published ‘Supporting a Healthy Environment: A fresh approach to our work on the environment’, which outlines the results and impacts of UK-supported environmental programmes in developing countries.
ESPA is highlighted as an example of how DFID base their work on the highest quality knowledge and evidence, with specific mention of ESPA's Kenyan-based project Swahili Seas – the world’s first ‘carbon credit’ project for mangroves.
ESPA Director, Paul van Gardingen commented: 'It’s great to see the importance of knowledge and evidence, and how it underpins everything DFID does, recognised. It’s particularly pleasing to see ESPA and Swahili Seas get a mention, and shows the fruitful returns of previous investment by both DFID and the UK’s research councils into world class research'.
Supporting a Healthy Environment can be downloaded from the DFID website.
ESPA Directors talk Rio
ESPA Director, Paul van Gardingen, and Deputy Director, Georgina Mace, have both commented on what Rio means for the future of sustainable development.
Paul wrote an article on the Rio+20 process and the input of research evidence for NERC's Planet Earth Online website, while Georgina contributed both an editorial and a podcast for PLoS Biology, which ask whether we really need to change our ways - or can we tehno-fix our way out of things?
Of the three examples of how science could better engage with society given by ICSU Executive Director Steven Wilson in his opinion piece on the Al Jazeera website, two of them are ESPA funded projects. His comments came the same day ICSU launched its Future Planet initiative at Rio+20.
Read an interview with ESPA's Director on the UK Food Security programme's website.
A project supported by ESPA has produced the world’s first environmental health index to be based on long-term historical data. This announcement raises hopes taht the work could be used to help safeguard the future of rural livelihoods across the developing world.
This story has been reported in NERC’s Planet Earth Online publication, on the Living with Environmental Change website, on the Phys.org website and has also been featured on DFID’s portal for research news, R4D.
PI Nigel Asquith writes for Harvard University's ReVista magazine about how the ESPA project 'What types of investment can most cost-effectively ensure ecosystem service provision? A randomized program evaluation' came into being.
An article on the ESPA programme in NERC's Planet Earth by ESPA Director, Professor Paul van Gardingen.