Connect 4 Water Resilience – Connect4WR (2019-2021)

CONNECT4WR logoConnect4WR explores the links between water resources and communities in four countries of the Limpopo Basin in southern Africa – Botswana, Mozambique, South Africa and Zimbabwe. The Limpopo basin is an arid, water-stressed basin, which is also highly susceptible to floods. Intermittent floods and droughts worsen water availability and quality problems, and both types of events are predicted to increase in frequency and magnitude with global climate change. Our project uses a mix of natural and social science methods to explore these challenges, and how they can be effectively managed by local communities and other stakeholders across scales.

WP1 will assess basin-scale hydrological connectivity, i.e. how droughts and floods propagate in space and time under varying physical conditions (hydrometeorology, physiography, geology, groundwater-surface water interactions), with a focus on how the hydrological response of a specific sub-region influences or is influenced by other regions.

WP2 will assess the basin-scale social connectivity, i.e. how drought-flood cycles are understood, anticipated and worked with by local communities and how these communities interact with governance institutions.

WP3 will integrate WP1 and WP2 and will work on the connectivity between social and hydrological systems. It will connect our understanding of multiscale hydrological processes underlying alternating droughts and floods with water resource and risk management, and societal preparedness pathways. This aims to co-create management solutions to reduce impacts and increase benefits of drought-flood cycles throughout the LRB.

Connect4WR is funded by SHEAR (Science for Humanitarian Emergencies and Resilience). This study is conducted in collaboration with University of Aberdeen (UK), University of Birmingham (UK), Anglia Ruskin University (UK), Eduardo Mondlane University in Maputo (Mozambique), Botswana International University of Science & Technology (Botswana), University of the Free State (South Africa), Dabane Trust (Zimbabwe), Red Cross (Mozambique), Water Research Commission (South Africa).

Contact information: Anne van Loon.

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Rangecroft, S., Birkinshaw, S., Rohse, M., Day, R., McEwen, L., Makaya, E. & van Loon, A.F. (2018). Hydrological modelling as a tool for interdisciplinary workshops on future drought. Progress in Physical Geography: Earth and Environment, 42(2), 237–256.