Research projects 4
Building on the successes and outcomes of the previous FinCEAL and FinCEAL Plus projects, the FinCEAL Plus Continuation project aimed to provide strategic support to enhance the cooperation between research and science policy communities in Finland, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Latin America and the Caribbean. The specific objectives of the project were to: 1. Strengthen Finnish participation in the EU STI policy dialogues with the target regions; 2. Support Finnish participation in joint research projects with partners from the target regions; 3. Enable Finnish expertise and know-how to be better known in the target regions; and 4. Gather and disseminate information on Finnish cooperation towards the regions within Finland as well as new cooperation possibilities with the target regions.
FinCEAL Plus started in January 2015 as an expansion and continuation of the FinCEAL Project (2012-2014), both funded by the Ministry of Education and Culture. The aims of the FinCEAL Plus project were to: 1. Increase and consolidate the Finnish bi-regional cooperation towards Africa, Asia, and the LAC region, with special emphasis on supporting Finnish researchers’ involvement in European bi-regional networks; 2. Support and consolidate the participation of Finnish experts in EU-Africa, EU-CELAC and EU- Asia bi-regional research and science policy dialogues; 3. Increase the knowledge about and visibility of Finnish cooperation towards the target regions within Finland; 4. Expand the awareness of Finnish expertise in the regions; and 5. Expand and consolidate the Finnish research communities’ awareness of cooperation possibilities with the EU, Africa, Asia and LAC region. 6. Throughout all the project activities, strengthening the Finnish universities’ global responsibility and making it more systematic and measurable.
In terms of social wellbeing and economic activity, Lao PDR is one of the poorest countries in Southeast Asia. Yet it is rich in terms of natural resources and holds a huge potential in renewable energy sector. FREPLA project incorporates resource development view point into a single research and development (R&D) set-up. The project aimed at identifying interlinkages, barriers, trade-offs and synergies in using the full potential of rural energy resources and applying holistic water management in national strategic planning. The key message of the project was that it is necessary to assure that the Mekong and its ecosystem services (including national and regional agri- and aquaculture) are not excessively distrubed by hydropower or any other natural resource projects, such as mining.
Jari Kaivo-Oja (FFRC), Sari Jusi (FFRC), Jyrki Luukkanen (FFRC), Khamso Kouphokham (MEM)
Scientific assessments and politics addressing environmental changes rarely involve local residents and their knowledge. Usually reasons of demographic growth and environmental mismanagement are used to justify local degradation; however, our aim is to understand the local perspective about causes and reasons of the degradation that causes insecurity, livelihood changes, migration trends and other decisions that bring into further environmental degradation. An ethnographic research has been conducted in two catchments of Taita Hills, South-East Kenya. Participatory mapping, observation, transect walks, historical timelines, semi-structured interviews with experts and civil society representatives, as well as focus groups were employed as main methods of data gathering.
Paola Minoia, Johanna Hohenthal, Belinda Kivivuori, Marinka Leppänen, Emmah Owidi.