Southern African Resilience Academy: Knowledge Exchange

Connecting research, policy and practice for social-ecological resilience

The Southern African Resilience Academy is a convening and support space for inter- and transdisciplinary researchers and practitioners working across southern Africa to engage around pressing resilience and development challenges in the region. The academy’s goals are to strengthen existing expert networks, expand collaboration, and facilitate the co-production of policy and practice-relevant knowledge.  

Since early 2022, SARA has supported eight working groups comprising a diverse range of experts, from early-career professionals to established practitioners. These groups are actively synthesizing regional knowledge under the theme of “Building equitable resilience in southern Africa.” Each working group focuses on different topics and systems, such as informality, telecoupling, urban food systems, and conservation systems. This innovative model resulted in both academic articles and a number of exciting non-academic products and processes. 

A new round of SARA is currently being planned for 2025-2027. This Knowledge Exchange event will offer opportunities to connect with others interested in becoming involved in the next round of working groups, working to synthesise knowledge under a common theme. 

The purpose of the event is to showcase the latest thinking on the theme of “Connecting research, policy and practice for social-ecological resilience” from across the region, to share SARA’S work on synthesising knowledge on “building equitable resilience in southern Africa,” and to offer a space to form collaborations relating to a new round of SARA working groups running from 2025-2027.

Event Themes

Supporting the principal theme of “Connecting research, policy and practice for social-ecological resilience” the event will focus on the following non-exhaustive sub-themes:

  • Transformations to sustainability
  • (In)Equitable resilience
  • Science-policy partnerships for resilience and transformation
  • Resilience assessment, monitoring and evaluation
  • Indigenous and local knowledge for resilience
  • Pathways to resilience in urban, food, water, and conservation systems

Abstracts and Registration

All students, researchers, policy-makers and practitioners are invited to submit abstracts to talk at the Knowledge Exchange on the general theme of “Connecting research, policy and practice for social-ecological resilience.”

Interested parties are also invited to hold mini-symposia/workshops at the Knowledge Exchange. Please submit an abstract for the mini-event using the abstract submission link below. Mini-workshops are 1-2 hour events which focus on a particular topic relating to the event theme. The format of these events is flexible and creative approaches are encouraged. Mini-events will take place in breakaway rooms accommodating up to 20 people. 

You are also welcome to attend without doing a talk, please simply register before the due date. 

Cost: R1500 per participant for all three days, lunches and two dinners included. 

Some funding may be available to support participants in need. Please use the abstract link below to motivate for your needs. 

Important dates

Abstracts deadline: 3 June 2024
Registration opens: 3 June 2024
Confirmation of selected talks: 10 June 2024
Registration closes: 1 July 2024

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