FOCUS-Africa’s Collaborative Success in Enhancing Climate Services for Africa


The FOCUS-Africa project, alongside its sister projects CONFER and DOWN2EARTH, recently held a series of impactful meetings in Brussels. These sessions aimed to enhance knowledge sharing and capacity building in climate services across Africa. During the event, stakeholders including European Commission officials discussed critical infrastructure challenges, sustainability, and the importance of co-production in climate services.

Photo by Katrine Jaklin, NORCE

The projects held intensive internal meetings to align their strategies and enhance their synergies. Each project presented its unique contributions and challenges, fostering a robust collaborative environment.

Climate Services for Africa Workshop

The external workshop at Norway House featured key presentations and strategic discussions from each project.

CONFER Project: Dr. Erik Kolstad emphasized the importance of co-developing climate services tailored to African contexts. The project showcased advancements in river stream flow forecasts and crop yield predictions, essential for early warnings and climate resilience.

DOWN2EARTH Project: Prof. Michael Singer presented an open-source impact-based modeling system designed for dryland hydrology in Ethiopia, Somalia, and Kenya. This system aims to support decision-making at local and regional levels, addressing water scarcity and food insecurity.

FOCUS-Africa Project: Dr. Roberta Boscolo highlighted the project’s comprehensive approach to developing climate services across the SADC countries. The focus on co-production and socio-economic assessments has demonstrated significant benefits for stakeholders, from public to private sectors.

Photo by Katrine Jaklin, NORCE

Assessing the Socio-Economic Value of Climate Services:

Sam Whittlesey (LGI) and Alberto Troccoli (WEMC) discussed methodologies for evaluating the socio-economic impact of climate services. Their insights underscored the tangible benefits of effective climate information dissemination and utilization.

Watch the full session of the Climate Services for Africa science policy workshop on Youtube.

World Café Session: The event concluded with a dynamic World Café session, where stakeholders engaged in structured discussions on key themes:

  • Joint Research Needs: Led by Dr. Lucy Mtilatila, focusing on collaborative research to address climate challenges.
  • Infrastructure Limitations: Chaired by Dr. Hanan Rabbah, exploring ways to overcome infrastructure hurdles.
  • Long-Term Strategic Vision: Guided by Dr. Katarzyna Drabicka, emphasizing the importance of sustainable climate service strategies.

The outcomes of these discussions will be compiled into a white paper to inform future policy and research directions within the European Commission.

Photo by Katrine Jaklin, NORCE


The workshop showcased the critical importance of cooperation and knowledge sharing in advancing climate resilience in Africa. The collaborative efforts of CONFER, DOWN2EARTH, and FOCUS-Africa set a precedent for future international climate initiatives.