Local and regional climate information is essential for making informed decisions on sustainable urban planning and management of a city’s energy and water resources.
FRACTAL creates opportunities for scientists and researchers to advance scientific knowledge about regional climate, and to connect with decision makers to integrate this knowledge into climate-sensitive decisions at the city scale.
The program focuses on eight Southern African cities – three Tier 1 cities (Windhoek, Lusaka, and Maputo), three Tier 2 cities (Blantyre, Gaborone and Harare) and two self-funded cities (Durban and Cape Town). FRACTAL is led by the Climate System Analysis Group at the University of Cape Town in collaboration with many regional and international partners.
This program is highly participatory. For example, researchers are embedded in the working world and practices of the people shaping climate-related decisions. “Learning Lab” events engage decision-makers, practitioners and researchers to jointly frame climate-related challenges and identify solutions. The first Learning Lab took place in 2016 in Lusaka, followed by events in Maputo and Windhoek.
Since 2016, START has combined its Grants for Global Environmental Change Research in Africa program with FRACTAL to provide an “opportunities fund” promoting knowledge exchange and learning across the cities, and to award grants for cross-city research.
START awards grants to researchers affiliated with FRACTAL to conduct interdisciplinary research on topics related or complementary to the program.
FRACTAL is part of the Future Climate for Africa initiative , a project funded by UK Department of International Development (DFID) and the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC).