Miombo matters

Miombo matters

Notes and queries about the largest savanna in the world: the southern African woodlands. This is the blog for Casey Ryan and the LANDteam research group at the University of Edinburgh

This is just out in PNAS, and shows that African savannas have a very distinct tree flora compared to nearby forests, based on a huge dataset of floristic inventories. This provides a new line of evidence that savannas and forests are alternative states in many climatic and edaphic conditions. Why does that matter? Well, if […]

charcoal truck impounded in Gaza, Mozambique

by the CwC team We have reported in previous blog posts on setting up our research project ‘Livelihood impacts of coping with Coronavirus in rural Africa’ (CwC), the ethical and methodological metamorphoses required, and some initial findings of many of our interviewees are anticipating a difficult year ahead.  Now, our research team has collected up […]

By the CwC team Por favor veja abaixo um sumário em português As we reported in our first project blog post, we have been setting up our research project on ‘Livelihood impacts of Coping with Covid-19 in rural Africa’ (CwC). We have been following principles including building on established partnerships, co-creating knowledge based on equity, […]

CwC materials

Materials being delivered to the CwC study communities in southern Mozambique. The sewing machines and capalanas are for making masks. Photo © Luis Artur, 2020. By the CwC team Resumo em português abaixo As we reported in our first project blog post, we have been setting up the first phase of our research project on […]

CwC village meeting in action

Socially distanced village meeting to set up the CwC project in central Mozambique. Photo: A. Kingman, MICAIA Reposted from the blog at SIID By the CwC team. A group of researchers from the Universities of Edinburgh (Scotland), Sheffield and Manchester (UK) and the Universidade Eduardo Mondlane(Mozambique) as well as the MICAIA foundation collaborated on a […]

tree nursery in Nhambita

New paper just out: Wells G, Fisher J, Jindal R, Ryan C. 2020. Social as much as environmental: the drivers of tree biomass in smallholder forest landscape restoration programmes. Environmental Research Letters. Open access at: https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1748-9326/ab96d1 A major challenge for forest landscape restoration initiatives is the lack of quantitative evidence on how social factors drive […]

There is conflicting evidence in the literature about how important wild land resources are during times of crisis (shocks like harvest failure, loss of household labour etc). This paper just out shows that they can be very important, particularly when the shocks co-occur with other crises.   Environmental resources are also critical when region-wide hazards […]

The effect of charcoal production on soil organic carbon and total nitrogen in the drylands of southern Mozambique New paper just out, and free access for 50 days via this link: https://authors.elsevier.com/c/1aCVj1L~GwKTkP Lisboa, S.N., Woollen, E., Grundy, I.M., Ryan, C.M., Smith, H.E., Zorrilla-Miras, P., Baumert, S., Ribeiro, N., Vollmer, F., Holland, M. & Sitoe, A. […]

butter beans and maize being bought

This just out on the impact of commercial soya production in Gurué, Zambézia: Baumert, S., Fisher, J., Ryan, C., Woollen, E., Vollmer, F., Artur, L., Zorrilla-Miras, P. & Mahamane, M. (2019) Forgone opportunities of large-scale agricultural investment: A comparison of three models of soya production in Central Mozambique. World Development Perspectives, 16, 100145. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wdp.2019.100145 “The […]

the miombo on fire at night

Miombo is the vernacular (plural) name for Brachystegia boehmii and similar trees found across Southern Africa (Coates Palgrave et al. 2002). However the name miombo is widely used to describe the savanna woodlands of Southern Africa that are dominated by trees of the subfamily Detarioideae of the Leguminosae, mainly of the genera Brachystegia, Julbernardia and […]

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