The UK Climate Resilience Programme ran from 2019 to 2023

COP26 hybrid event: Building climate resilience in a low carbon world

Wednesday 10th November 2021 at 18.00-19.00
COP26, Glasgow: IPCC-WMO-UKMO Pavilion

Livestream link:

Even in a low carbon world we will need to prepare for the unavoidable impacts of a changing climate by building resilience. To effectively respond to climate change we need both scientific and technical advances to understand climate-related risks, and to co-develop locally-appropriate responses to manage these risks alongside supportive governance to incentivise and fund it. Greater user-engagement at all stages of the research process from the identification of research questions to evaluation of the application of the findings, requires a different approach to research design and funding.

This event will showcase how two research programmes – the Strategic Priorities Fund UK Climate Resilience Programme and the Future Climate For Africa – in different contexts – the UK and Africa – have worked with research users, funders and policy makers at all stages of the research cycle to enhance the usefulness and usability of scientific research. The presentations and discussion will provide critical reflections and useful lessons for applied climate resilience research for researchers, funders and users of research in policy and practice in the global south and north.


18.00 Welcome from the chair Gideon Henderson (Chief Scientific Advisor, UK Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs)

18.05 SPF UK Climate Resilience Programme – Kate Lonsdale (University of Leeds)

18.15 Future Climate for Africa and HyCRISTAL- Geoffrey Sabiiti (ICPAC)

18.25 Q&A – Gideon Henderson to moderate

18.35 Panel Discussion with Tamara Janes (UK Met Office), Andrew Carr (Defra) and Julius Ng’oma (Civil Society Network on Climate Change) – Gideon Henderson to moderate

19.00 Close

Networking over drinks (British wines) and nibbles


The Strategic Priorities Fund (SPF) UK Climate Resilience Programme is a £18.6 million programme running from 2018-2023 and funded by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and the Met Office with Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) taking UKRI lead on behalf of Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). The programme aims to enhance  the  UK’s  resilience  to  climate  variability  and  change  through  frontier interdisciplinary  research  and  innovation  on  climate  risk,  adaptation  and  services,  working with stakeholders and end-users to ensure the research is useful and usable.

Future Climate For Africa was a 6 year, £25 million programme funded by FCDO and the Natural Environment Research Council that aimed to deliver a step-change in African climate science and improve the use of climate information into planning and decision-making. The programme emphasised interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary approaches and co-production approaches to enable research to translate into impact, through four consortia working in west Africa, East Africa, central and southern Africa, and southern Africa that variously generated climate information to inform water and sanitation, agriculture, and urban planning.


Professor Gideon Henderson (Chief Scientific Advisor at the UK’s Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs). Gideon Henderson was appointed Chief Scientific Advisor at the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs on 1 October 2019. He is responsible for overseeing the quality of evidence that the Department relies on for policy decisions. He also provides ministers with scientific advice and sets the priorities for scientific research and evidence-gathering. He has been Professor of Earth Sciences at the Department of Earth Sciences in the University of Oxford since 2006.


Dr Kate Lonsdale is SPF UK Climate Resilience Champion based at the University of Leeds. She has worked on adaptation to a changing climate as a researcher, trainer, facilitator, and evaluator and in an advisory capacity for over 26 years in both developed and developing country contexts.  She has led and managed projects in a range of settings including civil society, academia and policy and within organizations that aim to create a bridge between these different sectors.

Dr Geoffrey Sabiiti is a climate change adaptation officer at IGAD’s Climate Prediction and Applications Centre (ICPAC), covering countries in the greater horn of Africa.  He is currently implementing an EU funded project; “Strengthening Resilience to adverse Impacts of Climate Change in the IGAD region through Adaptation and Mitigation Actions”, and has also been involved in the review of IGAD’s regional climate change strategy, documentation of climate change impacts, greenhouse gas inventories, and the climate change negotiations. He was a Co-Investigator for the Future Climate for Africa HyCRISTAL project.


Dr Andrew Carr is Head of Adaptation Science at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, leading on government delivery of the CCRA, and managing research projects which aim to progress government adaptation efforts, whilst ensuring scientific evidence underpins departmental climate activities. Previously, Andrew led on Earth Observation and Climate at Defra, and has worked on climate research internationally in China and Uganda.

Mr Julius Ng’oma is the National Coordinator of the Civil Society Network on Climate Change in Malawi, network organization for coordinating civil society initiatives for climate change management and disaster risk reduction. He leads on policy research and advocacy, capacity building and information management; networking coordination and collaboration and fund raising and resource mobilization. He has been part of Malawi’s COP delegation since 2014, and has also played a key role in other regional and international initiatives to address climate change, including acting as Alternate Active Observer to the Green Climate Fund representing CSO in the Global South; a Focal Person for Pan African Climate Justice Alliance and member of the Southern Voices on Adaptation Network. He will share some user perspectives on the Future Climate for Africa UMFULA project in Malawi.

Dr Tamara Janes is a climate scientist at the Met Office. As part of the Climate Information for International Development Team, she contributes to the development and delivery of research and capacity building projects, focusing primarily on the Asian and African regions. She has been involved in capacity building and regional climate research projects in India, Bangladesh, Kenya, Singapore, West Africa and southern Africa. As part of the Future Climate for Africa FRACTAL project, her work focused on the effective communication of climate information for policy and decision making activities in municipal governments and local communities in southern Africa.