Resilience in East African Landscapes: Identifying critical thresholds and
sustainable trajectories – past, present and future

Project leader

Project Details

Start date: 01/09/2013
End date: 31/08/2017
Funding: 3968063 EUR


The strong temporal dynamics of the East African landscape and natural-resource distributions have always encouragedpeople to innovate and adapt to changing conditions. However, increasing population growth, changes in patterns of landtenure, industrialization, weak systems of governance, and global climate change have exacerbated previously localizedenvironmental problems such as soil erosion, depletion of water catchments, loss of forests and grazing land, falling soilfertility and biodiversity. Novel approaches for resolving these challenges are thus urgently needed. Based on the premisethat the past is key to understanding the present and planning for the future, this ITN will establish a leading Europeantraining network devoted to combining state-of-the-art research methods to tap into under-appreciated knowledge of howindigenous peoples have previously adapted to East Africa's intrinsically unstable climate and land/water resources. Bybringing together ecologists, archaeologists, anthropologists, geographers, historians and agronomists the ITN will providecross-disciplinary training to a new generation of researchers, enabling them to interpret data relating to past and presentsocio-cultural and ecological dynamics from across the environmental and social sciences and the humanities. Organizedby researchers from seven European universities in partnership with Bayer East Africa and U&We, the ITN will co-operateclosely with academic counterparts, private-sector stakeholders, NGOs and local communities in East Africa. It will highlighthow detailed awareness of the complex history of human-environment interaction in East Africa is central to well-foundedand ecologically sustainable resource management, thereby restore the important function of indigenous know-how crucialfor devising development policies and climate-risk management for specific areas, and train a new generation of futureecosystem-service managers, policy makers and entrepreneurs.

External Partners

Last updated on 2017-22-03 at 07:12