Welcome to AFAS

Nature-based solutions for climate change adaptation and biodiversity conservation: linking science, policy and practice 

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AFAS Côte d’Ivoire attended the annual event of the LAMTO savanna burning

Savannas are important ecosystems characterized by the co-dominance of trees and grasses, including systems with a continuous herbaceous layer and a discontinuous woody stratum (Frost et al., 1986). These ecosystems cover approximately 20% of the Earth’s land area and takes up almost half of the African continent. The dynamics of these ecosystems are influenced by rainfall, fire, and herbivory, making them either “stable” or “unstable” (Sankaran et al., 2005), due to the magnitude of any of these factors.

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AFAS Team Tree Planting at Wangari Maathai Institute for Peace and Environmental Studies in Nairobi, Kenya

There is this famous quote which states that “The best time to plant a tree was twenty years ago. The second-best time to plant a tree was yesterday.” It is at this backdrop that the Future African Savannas (AFAS) project team, led by its Principal Investigators Prof. Daniel Olago (Institute for Climate Change and Adaptation- University of Nairobi (UoN), Kenya) and the projects’ coordinators Dr. Juliet Kamau (Centre for Development Research (ZEF)-University of Bonn, Germany), Dr. Gerda Kuiper (Global South Studies Centre – University of Cologne, Germany), Prof. Ngolo Kone (African Center of Excellence for Climate Change, Biodiversity and Sustainable Agriculture-Université Félix Houphouët-Boigny (UFHB), Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire) and Ms. Lewnorah Ayietta (Institute for Climate Change and Adaptation (ICCA)-University of Nairobi, Kenya) had the team taking up a tree planting exercise at the Wangari Maathai Institute for Peace and Environmental Studies.

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AFAS Stakeholder Workshop – Nairobi 2022

On 22 and 23 November 2022, our AFAS Stakeholder Workshop was held at the Mövenpick Hotel in Nairobi, Kenya. The workshop was titled “Co-designing Science-Policy-Practice Interfaces (SPPIs) to Support Nature-based Solutions (NbS) in Africa’s Savanna Regions”

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Meet the students

Ami Léonie Kanga

Université Félix Houphouët-Boigny, Côte d’Ivoire

Anita Myriam Emma Kouassi

Université Félix Houphouët-Boigny, Côte d’Ivoire

Claire Anulisa Adhiambo

University of Nairobi, Kenya


About us

The African Climate and Environment Center – Future African Savannas (AFAS) commenced in 2021 and is one of the DAAD Global Centres for Climate and Environment. AFAS is a consortium between two African and two German universities and strives for interdisciplinary and international exchange beyond academia by working on the science-policy-practice interface. The thematic focus of the center is nature-based solutions for climate change adaptation and biodiversity loss in African savannas.

Photo copyright: DAAD/Stefan Zeitz

Our mission

The project initiative stems from the urgent need to develop sound and robust evidence-based and science-backed strategies to preserve and protect the fragile environments of the West and East African savannas against the combined threats of extensive and diverse land use and rapid climate change. AFAS aims to train young African scholars in the interdisciplinary field of climate change adaptation and biodiversity and to transfer scientific findings into practice, while at the same time reducing the climate and environmental footprint of education, research and international cooperation. The project specifically focuses on the potential of nature-based solutions and of cooperation on the science-policy-practice interface.

Global Centres for Climate and Environment as well as for Health and Pandemic Prevention

Image Film by DAAD