Climate change impacts on West African Agriculture (CIWARA) — A regional assessment
Teams of crop, economic, and climate scientists in Western Africa are assessing
climate change impacts on agriculture in semi-arid and sub-humid Western
Africa (Fig.). The project is standardizing an open-access database, comparing
and improving crop model performance, improving spatial coverage of agrometeorological
advisories for smallholder farmers, updating selected policy instruments
at the national and regional levels, and building research capacity for
integrated climate change impacts assessments.
This assessment will increase representation of climate, crop, and economic
data in West Africa, enrich agro-biodiversity in crop models, apply representative
agricultural pathways to study future regional climate change impacts, and will refine
crop calendars and agro-meteorological advisories into location and ecotype specific decision support tools.West African policy-makers will be briefed on possible local
impacts of climate variability and change, to inform decisions in adaptation and
Capacity building will include graduate student internships, exchange visits, and
technical training, as well as outreach activities for the media and policy-makers;
data sharing and joint publication. The aim is to create a network of AgMIP alumni
from local universities in their country of origin who are continuously involved in
the project’s research activities.
The research project assesses regional climate change impacts on Western
African agriculture by improving the characterization of food security risks due to
climate variability and change and enhances the adaptive capacity ofWest African
populations for changing environmental and technological conditions.