University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > British Antarctic Survey - Polar Oceans seminar series > Making your work ODA-able: refocussing science for official development assistance

Making your work ODA-able: refocussing science for official development assistance

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Dr Dave Munday.

If external to BAS, please email the organiser in advance to gain access to the building

In the new funding landscape, some national capability money has been re-profiled to focus on overseas work. But how can work done at BAS be relevant for less developed countries on DAC List?

It may seem like a big ask for you to apply polar science to a list of what are largely tropical nations, but don’t give up! You’d be surprised how techniques you use everyday for polar science can be applicable to low and middle income countries.

I will give some examples of how numerical modelling work at the National Oceanography Centre Liverpool has been successfully transferred to South Asia, and where methods developed for European seas have been made applicable worldwide. Cutting-edge observing capability is another strength which has great potential to be applied away from Antarctica.

BAS has unique expertise in observation and modelling which is missing from almost every other country. The Vision “To be a world-leading centre for polar science and polar operations, addressing issues of global importance and helping society adapt to a changing world” suggests you are well placed to find a niche in ODA space for your research.

I will present a summary of recent stakeholder workshop run in Dhaka to identify areas of scientific interest to Bangladeshi partners. Myself and a colleague from NOC held a workshop with local government, charities and universities to identify their needs. We discussed science-policy gaps, and found common areas for collaboration between NOC and Bangladesh. We left this meeting with a much better idea of their needs, which is now guiding the shape of a proposal to the Global Challenges Research Fund.

Finally, it’s not about lending a helping hand to less-developed countries. ODA should not be a patronising intervention, but rather the building of a strong and equal relationship with scientists overseas. Partnerships with institutes abroad developing their own science can be very rewarding, both in terms of knowledge transfer and exploring new areas of discovery science.

This talk is part of the British Antarctic Survey - Polar Oceans seminar series series.

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