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Alterra Wageningen UR opens Zambia office

Gepubliceerd op
4 april 2013

As from this week Alterra Wageningen UR has permanent presence in Zambia in the person of Claire Jacobs. The number of projects Alterra is undertaking in Zambia is increasing and was the reason for moving Claire Jacobs to Lusaka, Zambia. Claire has affiliations with FAO, Department of Forestry of the Ministry of Environment as well as with University of Zambia.

Discussion round

Before she left, a discussion round on Zambia was conducted on 28 March; representatives from various parts of Wageningen UR discussed their projects in Zambia as well as ideas and opportunities to start new activities.

Current projects in Zambia include capacity building projects at two of the three public universities in Zambia (Mulungushi University and Copperbelt University), while the third public university (University of Zambia) is a partner in the Eau4Food EU project that is coordinated by Alterra. In another EU funded project coordinated by Alterra, Wahara, we work with a public-private partnership in Zambia, called GART.

Zambian PhD students include Concilia Monde, who studies Bilharzia issues and Justina Ngoma who studies the effects of climate change on forest based livelihoods in Zambia, both are supervised by ESG staff.

Good prospects

The use of Geo-Information in Sub Saharan Africa and linking this with extension activities for smallholders was among the ideas to further explore. Aquaculture also offers good prospects for combining Wageningen UR expertise and market opportunities in Zambia. Soon a second Wageningen UR colleague, Sijmen Schoustra (Laboratory of Genetics), will also be based in Zambia for a number of years, for his work on local traits in food.

Claire Jacobs: “An advantage of being based in Zambia is also that Zambia is land-linked and work in its eight neighboring countries can also be much easier carried out with an office in Zambia, like the World Bank assignment in Zimbabwe that I am currently also working on. The idea of the Zambia office is that execution of projects in the area is easier, while also new project possibilities will be easier to identify and commissioned to us."

All those who are interested can contact Claire Jacobs by mail.