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Grant Davidson, 1 July 2014

Ugandan fieldwork benefitting MSc students

The ALTER project in Uganda has had a busy summer as fieldwork got under way. On top of this CAFEA hosted three Masters students from the School of Geosciences at the University of Edinburgh. Each of the three students spent approximately 6 weeks in the field in SW Uganda collecting social data on specific issues to examine the links between soils and poverty. Each UK student was paired with at least one Ugandan student from Kabale University to work together closely for support and to learn from each other.

Thesis titles include:

Analysis of the socio-cultural and economic determinants of adoption of soil and water conservation measures by farmers in villages participating in a farmer field school project near Lake Bunyonyi, Uganda

Fuzzy cognitive mapping as a tool for analysing the sustainability of common-pool resources - An application to the Rwamucucu wetland in Kabale district, Uganda

The poverty- environmental nexus – a review of method and an exploration of potential linkages in the Nomuremo wetland in Uganda.

As well as this, three environmental science and technology students from Kyambogo University in Kampala completed internships with CAFEA working on the ALTER project. These students worked along side CAFEA researchers helping to take biophysical measurements of soils and gases in the organic soils field sites. These students also developed a prototype app for capturing wetland inventory data. The android-based app uses ODK software to electronically record information on wetland conditions and human impacts on the wetland.

CAFEA wishes to thanks all these students for their hard work and contribution to the ALTER project, and looks forward to supporting more students next year.