Cooperation with the University of Namibia
University of Turku and University of Namibia (UNAM) are tightening their collaboration. You can learn about the Africa linked projects and research in an Africa workshop.
The University of Turku and UNAM are in the process of signing a cooperation agreement. The purpose of the agreement is to deepen the cooperation between the universities and hence improve both teaching and research of the universities. This is done by means of shared research projects, the systematic exchange of lecturers, students and administrative staff and technical assistance as well as through various other university activities.
The agreement originates from the research cooperation done by Professor Jukka Käyhkö from the Department of Geography and Geology. Käyhkö is leading the AnNa Waters development research project (Living with floods and droughts at the Angola/Namibia border: Sustainable water resources in fluctuating climate in the Cuvelai catchment) which started in September 2011 and has been funded by the Academy of Finland.
University of Namibia has also recently joined the Southern African-Nordic Centre (SANORD) in which the University of Turku is also a part of.
Flooding Research in Namibia
The project led by Professor Jukka Käyhkö focuses on the seasonal flooding and droughts of the Cuvelai River, situated on the border between Angola and Namibia. In the area, there are approximately one million people, who use the river as their main water supply. The flooding during the rainy season affects greatly their everyday life: buildings are submerged, people are evacuated, and moving and farming become difficult.
Käyhkö explains that the land-use planning is different from Finland. Because there is a shortage of cultivable lands, farms are built to low-lying lands which are at high risk during the flooding season.
- The idea of the project has been to offer Finnish knowhow so that the locals may use it to develop their own water management systems, Käyhkö says.
- In the project, we also took climate change into consideration and did, in cooperation with the Finnish Meteorological Institute and Finland’s environmental administration, a 100 year climate model which can be used to predict rainfall. The figures can be used to predict the river’s flooding and the buildings can be directed to a safe zone, Käyhkö tells.
The yearlong pilot study ended in August. New funding for the continuation of the project has been applied from the Academy of Finland. This project works in cooperation with the academy project called "Tiedon jalostumisen prosessit" (the processes of the refinement of knowledge), which is led by Professor Jussi Jauhiainen.