Examples of current research

Scott Thacker

Reducing the risks associated with infrastructure system failures due to extreme climatic events.

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Abrar Chaudhury

Resilience and adaptive capacity of food systems to climate change.

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Chase Sova

A systematic framework for integrated climate change adaptation.

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Resilience and adaptive capacity of food systems to climate change.

Abrar Chaudhury

Abrar is a doctoral student and former Rhodes Scholar on the ECM masters and Oxford’s MBA programme. He is part of a CCAFS funded multidisciplinary project team conducting research into resilience and adaptive capacity of food systems to climate change.

His research focuses on unraveling the complex interconnections between regional, national, and local actors entrusted with translating national climate change policies into effective adaptation actions and smallholding farming communities impacted by these changes. Abrar’s research spans many levels from strategic regional scenarios, national adaptation plans, to local community action plans in farming communities across the Terai plains of Nepal, the vulnerable north of Ghana and the flood prone south of Pakistan. While clearly many disconnects exist between policy and action; Abrar has experienced many wonderful examples of local adaptation strategies and resolve of national and local actors to collectively tackle the problem of climate change.

Reducing the risks associated with infrastructure system failures due to extreme climatic events

Scott Thacker

Scott Thacker is a third year DPhil student, fully funded by the EPSRC and the engineering consultancy ARUP. Scott’s research is affiliated with the ITRC project and focuses on reducing the risks associated with infrastructure system failures due to extreme climatic events.

His work has received high-level interest from HM Treasury and the Committee on Climate Change. Following a successful EPSRC knowledge exchange proposal, Scott will work with National Grid on translating theoretical developments into a tool to support their business needs. Alongside interaction with industrial and governmental partners, Scott has been an active member of the academic community, presenting papers at a number of conferences including NetSci 2012 and 2013 and the 2014 ITRC conference on the Economics of Infrastructure held at the University of Cambridge. He has had wider interaction with the School of Geography and the Environment, teaching on the undergraduate course and interviewing potential future students.

A systematic framework for integrated climate change adaptation.

Chase Sova

Chase works with a team of four Oxford University PhD Students on a multidisciplinary CCAFS project called Systemic Integrated Adaptation (SIA). The project includes partners from the International Centre for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) in Colombia, and a host of in-country partners in Ghana and Nepal. Chase looks at the way that climate change adaptation policies are being developed in the agricultural sectors of Ghana and Nepal. He examines who is making decisions in these contexts, how agendas are being set, and the impact that this has on preferred adaptation options for small-scale farmers in those countries.

The project involves four PhD students, each with their own disciplinary background. Chase's ‘lens’ of the project is political, while the others look at finance, sociology, and ecology. It is among the first interdisciplinary studies of climate change adaptation in the agricultural sector. Specific to the political perspective, adaptation policy is a new and emerging area of study. Understanding how those policies are developed and identifying who benefits from them in our studycountries is a strong contribution to the field. Chase's work on policy has been presented at international climate change conferences (COP 19 in Warsaw) and in other technical forums of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).