The Workshop for Enhancing Collaborative Research on the Environment in Sub-Saharan Africa Arlington, Virginia usa 24-26 January 2005
Programme Officertaxonomy and Invasive
Secretariat of the U.N. Convention on
393, rue St-Jacques-Suite 300
Montreal, Quebec, H3Y 1N9
Director, Program Development and Federal Relations
Associate Director, Transnational and Global Studies
University of Florida
Gainesville, Fl 32611
Global Internet Policy Initiative (GIPI)
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Washington, DC 20036
Phone: (202) 833-5740 ext. 200
Phone: (203) 329-3288
Fax: (203) 547-6020
Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory
Colorado State University
Fort Collins, CO 80523-1499
Phone: (970) 491-1964
School of Animal, Plant and Environmental
P Bag 3
WITS 2050, South Africa
North Carolina State University
Marine, Earth & Atmospheric Sciences
4144 Jordan Hall
Raleigh, NC 27695
Phone: (919) 515-1434
Fax: (919) 515-7802
Professor, Rangeland Ecology & Management
Texas Agricultural Experiment Station
Vernon, TX 76385
Phone: (940) 552-9941
Fax: (940) 553-4657
Department of Soil Science
P.O. Box 7062
14th Street & Constitution Avenue, NW
37309 Kings Valley Highway
Philomath, OR 97370
Phone: (541) 929-4155
The National Science Foundation
4201 Wilson Boulevard
Arlington, VA 22230
The National Science Foundation
4201 Wilson Boulevard
Arlington, VA 22230
Head, Dept. of Livestock and Pasture Science
Faculty of Agriculture and Environmental Science
Universtiy of Fort Hare
Private Bag X1314
University of California, Berkeley
Berkeley, CA 94720
Office of International S&T Information Programs
The National Academies
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Phone: (202) 334-2807 Ext. 1531
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Depatment of Biology
University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM 87131
Phone: (505) 277-2109
Fax: (505) 277-5355
American Geophysical Union (AGU)
2000 Florida Avenue N.W.
University of Virginia
P.O. Box 400123
Department of Natural Resources Science
University of Rhode Island
Kingston, RI 02881-0804
Phone: (401) 874-4345
Fax: (401) 874-4561
Institute of Primate Research
P.O. Box 24481
Natural Resources Ecology Lab
Colorado State University
Fort Collins, CO 80523
Phone: (970) 491-1101
University of California, Berkeley
Berkeley, CA 94720
Professor & Special Asst. to the President
James Madison University
Phone: (540) 568-4506
Institute of Resources Assessment
University of Dar es Salaam
PO Box 35097
Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
P.O. Box 208105
21 Sachem Street, ESC 370a
New Haven, CT 06520
Phone: (203) 432-4606
Fax: (203) 432-5176
Sample Invitation Letter
On behalf of the organizing committee, I am pleased to invite you to a workshop for Enhancing Collaborative Research on the Environment in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), which will take place in Arlington, VA (very close to Washington, D.C.) from Monday, January 24 through Wednesday, January 26, 2005.
PLEASE LET ME KNOW IMMEDIATELY VIA REPLY E-MAIL THAT YOU HAVE RECEIVED THIS E-MAIL. You have more time to answer the invitation (see below), but I need to know that you received it!
The workshop is being funded by the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) and will be held at the NSF headquarters. Professor David Hartnett (Kansas State University) and I, working in close collaboration with NSF’s Office of International Science and Engineering, are coordinating the arrangements for this workshop. The meeting is intended to facilitate interactions among the U.S. scientific community working in the SSA region, SSA scientists, and agencies, private foundations and organizations that work and fund science projects in SSA. It will involve U.S. researchers supported by several NSF directorates, and representing many disciplines (e.g., ecology, atmospheric sciences, earth sciences, anthropology, geography, and environmental engineering). The meeting participants will produce a report for NSF that makes recommendations on how to strengthen research collaborations between U.S. scientists and scientists in Africa, how to build an effective, sustainable international community of scholars that can effectively address important research questions in the area of the environment in the SSA region, and how to catalyze the integration and synthesis of results across disciplines, geographic regions and hierarchical levels in this part of the world.
The meeting will include fifty to sixty participants from the U.S., approximately twenty participants from Africa collaborating on NSF-funded research projects, officials from NSF and from other U.S. government agencies, as well as representatives from foundations and organizations that funds scientific projects in Africa. A list of the meeting participants will be made available to you as soon as it is finalized.
This is a truly inter-disciplinary effort dealing with a wide range of questions, some of which are of continental dimensions and global implication. The invited participants have therefore been selected because of their unique combination of academic leadership, disciplinary breadth and depth, and logistical expertise in the key disciplines to be represented at the meeting. You have been invited because we feel that you can bring valuable insight to the deliberations of the meeting, representing both your discipline, as well as your part of Africa. We hope that you will be able to accommodate this important meeting in your busy schedule.
A detailed meeting agenda will be e-mailed to you as soon as it is finalized. Since this is a truly community activity, extensive and inclusive consultations are being made in the formulation the final agenda. The main sessions of the meeting will include:
--An opening session that reviews NSF’s research activity in SSA, emphasizing both the scientific dimensions as well as the mechanisms of funding;
-- Two poster sessions, one for scientists to present ongoing research projects and a second for presentations by U.S. and African funding agencies;
--At least two plenary lectures describing exemplary projects and models of collaboration and networking;
--Several sessions of working groups focusing on: (i) identification of major areas of research opportunity and environmental topics of mutual interest to the U.S. and SSA countries; (ii) discussion of interdisciplinary approaches and potential program linkages; (iii) identification of opportunities to widen the funding base beyond NSF, particularly to provide funding for the African researchers, (iv) discussion of opportunities to involve students and young scientists in SSA research, and (v) discussions of operational and logistical issues involved in collaborations, including issues of communication and data.
--A final synthesis session on Wednesday to consolidate workshop recommendations and materials for the meeting’s report and action plan.
--For a subset of participants, an extra session on Thursday, January 27 devoted to information management, computer resources and technologies issues among this community of researchers.
This meeting is appropriately called a workshop because we expect all participants to help with the work of the meeting. Participants will need to attend all three days of the meeting and,
--provide current academic vitae (no more than 4 pages) to be included in the workshop’s database;
--present a poster on the research being conducted by themselves, students and collaborators;
--help to moderate or write up results of the working group sessions for the report to NSF and for inclusion in the workshop summary that will be published on the web.
The meeting will be held at the National Science Foundation, 4201 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, Virginia 22230, near Washington D.C. Our grant from NSF will cover your travel, accommodation, and subsistence costs for the meeting. An information package for travel and hotel arrangements will be mailed to you upon receiving your acceptance to the invitation.
Please send your acceptance/decline by November 29th, 2004:
Via e-mail at <mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>email@example.com
Or by FAX at +919 515-7802
If you will be participating in the workshop, please send your current academic vitae (no more than 4 pages, and preferably in Microsoft Word) with your acceptance by e-mail to:firstname.lastname@example.org>email@example.com.
If you have any questions about this meeting, you can reach me by calling +919-515 1434.
We are sending the first notice/invitation of this meeting via e-mail, but will follow it with an official invitation printed on North Carolina State University letterhead. If you have not received this paper invitation within 2 weeks of this e-mail, please contact me and I will make arrangements to re-mail or FAX you the invitation.
For your information, a list of the invitees from Africa who have already accepted our invitation to is appended below. We are expecting to hear from a few more invitees and this list will be updated in due course. If you presently have (or have had) collaboration with any of them in your NSF-funded research you are encouraged to contact them to explore possible opportunities to enhance interaction during and after the workshop.
On behalf of the organizing committee, I would like to express our appreciation for your consideration to participate in the SSA workshop. We look forward to your acceptance of this invitation and to seeing you in the U.S. in January 2005. Should you have questions concerning the subject of this communication or the workshop in general, please do not hesitate to call or contact me.
Fredrick. H. M. Semazzi, Ph. D.
Professor, Department of Mathematics & Department of Marine, Earth &
North Carolina State University
cc: Professor David Hartnett (Kansas State University)
cc: Dr. Elizabeth Lyons (National Science Foundation)
Mr. Evaristo Liwa (National Science Foundation)
Appendix C: Framework for Working Group Discussions
Outline of General Framework for Working Group Discussions
(Each working group will use the following three general areas as a framework for discussion. The specific questions and topics of focus will vary among sessions and groups)
1. Current Assessment:
What programs, networks, infrastructure are already in place?
What ongoing programs or projects would benefit from greater collaboration and synergy?
What current activities and mechanisms are working well?
What is the status of our knowledge base in this area?
What is the current status of communication and networking (within
the region and between U.S. and SSA)
2. Identification of key issues, challenges, and opportunities
Capacity building – what are the needs regarding intellectual capital?
What are the factors hindering collaboration?
Linkages among programs, countries, regions
Cross-discipline linkages – e.g. incorporating social sciences, engineering
Identification and prioritization of research needs and opportunities
Identification and prioritization of training needs and opportunities
Scale of projects and programs needed (individual, institutional, national, regional)
Physical infrastructure needs
3. Identification and Prioritization of Recommended Actions and Enhancements
Recommended new initiatives, infrastructure, activities, and networking
Specific ways to foster more effective communication and collaboration
Identification, prioritization, and implementation of specific mechanisms (e.g. networks, IM systems, cyber-infrastructure, specific program linkages, digital libraries/bibliographies, program and personnel directories, multi-disciplinary degree and training programs, funding mechanisms, new partnerships, new linkages among agencies and organizations, regular meetings/symposia focused on SSA region)
APPENDIX D: LISTYLE="OF ACRONYMS
AERC: African Economic Research Consortium
AETFAT: African Plant Taxonomy Association
AFEA: African Finance and Economic Association
AFNOG: Africa Network Operators’ Group
AFRIFLUX: Promoting Research on Ecosystem Function in Africa
AHEAD: Animal Health for the Environment and Development
AMMA: African Monsoon Multidisciplinary Activities
APINA: Air Pollution Information Network of Africa
ASARECA: Association for Strengthening Agricultural Research and in Eastern Central Africa
ATICS: African Teritiary Institution Connectivity Survey Report
AVHRR: Advance Very High Resolution Radiometer
AVU: African virtual University
BENRON: Botswana Environment & Natural Resources Observatory Network
CARPE: Central African Rainforest Project
CODESRIA: Council for Economic and Social Research in Africa
CTFS: Center for Tropical Forest Science. Smithsonian Tropical Research
EAFRINET: East African Network for Capacity Building in Taxonomy
ELTOSA: Environmental Long-Term Observatories Network of Southern Africa
ENSO: El Nino Southern Oscillation
EON: Environmental Observatorics Network
EU: European Union
FAO: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
FCCC: Framework Convention on Climate Change
FEWS: Famine Early Warning System
GCMS: Global Circulation Models
GHA: Greater Horn of Africa
GPCC: Global Precipitation Climatology Centre
GPS: Global Positioning System
GSSA: Grassland Society of Southern Africa
GTZ: German Agency for Technical Co-operation( Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit)
IDEAL: International Decade of the East African Lakes
IGAD: Intergovernmental Authority on Development
ICPAC IGAD Climate Prediction and Applications Center
IGBP: International Geosphere-Biosphere Program
ILTER International Long-term Ecological Research Network
IMF: International Monetary Fund
IOSEP: International Opportunities for Scientists and Engineers Program
IPCC: International Panel of Climate
IT: Information Technology
IUCN: Specialist Groups
LOOPS: Locally Owned and Operated Partnerships
LTER: Long-Term Ecological Research
LUCID: Land-use Change Impacts and Dynamics, East Africa
LULCC: Land Use and Land Cover Change
MAP: Mean Annual Precipitation
MODIS: Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer
NAFRINET: North African Network for Capacity Building in Taxonomy
NASA: National Aeronotics and Space Administration
NCDC: National Climatic Data Center
NCEAS: National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis
NCEP: National Centers for Environmental Predictions
NDVI: Normailized Difference Vegetation Index
NEPAD: New Partnership for African Development
NIH: National Institutes of Health
NORAD: North American Aerospace Defense Command
NSF: National Science Foundation
OISE: Office of International Science and Engineering
ORSTOM: Organisation de Recherche Scientifique outré Mer
RANET: RAdio & InterNET for the Communication of Hydro-Meteorological and Climate Related Information
RCSA: Regional Center for Southern Africa
REBAC: Central African Botany Network
REGCM3: Regional Climate Model Version 3
RIEM: Ecological and Environmental Network of Mozambique
SACCAR: Southern African Centre for Co-operation in Agriculture and Natural Resources Research and Training
SADC: Southern African Development Community
SAEON: South African Environmental Observatory Network
SAFARI: Southern African Regional Science Initiative
SAFNET: Southern Africa Fire Network
SAFRINET: Southern African Network for Capacity Building in Taxonomy
SAHRA: University of Arizona, digital abstracts on water throughout the world
SANTREN: Southern African Environmental Network
SAPES: Southern African Policy and Economic Studies
SAVANA: Southern African Virginia Networks Association
SCOPE: Science Controversies On-line: Partnerships in Education
SSA: Sub-Saharan Africa
START: SysTem for Analysis, Research and Training
TANAPA: Tanzania National Parks
TAWIRI: Tanzania Wildlife Research Institute
TRMM: Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission
UCAD: Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar
UNDP: United Nations Drought Programme
UNECA: United Nations Economic Commission for Africa
UNEP: United Nations Environment Programme
UNESCO: United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organzation
USAID: United States Agency for International Development
USLE: Universal Soil Loss Equation
WAFRINET: West African Network for Capacity Building in Taxonomy
WATERNET: Water/Land Training Network
WMO: World Meteorological Organization
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