Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

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Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP-SICA | Phase: HEALTH.2012.3.4-1 | Award Amount: 7.26M | Year: 2012

The objective of the EMERALD Project is to improve mental health outcomes by enhancing health system performance. The key issues addressed are: (i) adequate, fair & sustainable resourcing: using human, infrastructural, informational & financial resource inputs to effectively deliver better mental health services; (ii) integrated service provision: enhancing access to integrated community care; and (iii) improved coverage & goal attainment: scaled-up, appropriate and cost-effective care in the community & reduction of disease burden & economic impacts. We are innovative in: (i) our track record to work collaboratively across health system boundaries; (ii) excellent ability to deliver on agreed work packages; (iii) delivering high quality & precisely relevant capacity development materials to our key target groups; & (iv) key leadership roles eg in developing the WHO mhGAP Implementation Guide. We are committed to taking the health system strengthening steps necessary for its realization in Ethiopia, India, Nepal, Nigeria, South Africa & Uganda.

FLOWERED objective is to contribute to the development of a sustainable water management system in areas affected by fluoride (F) contamination in water, soils and food in the African Rift Valley countries (Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania), thus to improve living standards (environmental, health and food security) of its population. FLOWERED aims to study, test and implement innovative defluoridation technologies for drinking and irrigation water that will mainly operate at small village scale and to develop an integrated, sustainable and participative water and agriculture management at a cross-boundary catchment scale. On the basis of the complexity of the issue of water de-fluoridation, the proposed scientific approach in FLOWERED is based on a detailed knowledge of the geological and hydrogeological setting that controls contamination of water that constitute the prerequisite for the implementation of a sustainable water management and for the proposal of sustainable and suitable strategies for water sanitation and agricultural system. Innovative agricultural practices will be assessed, aiming to mitigate the impacts of F contamination of water and soil on productivity of selected food and forage crops and dairy cattle health and production. The development of an innovative and shared Geo-data system will support the integrated, sustainable and participative management system. FLOWERED, focusing on innovative technologies and practices and taking into account local experiences, will implement an integrated water and agriculture management system and will enable local communities to manage water resources, starting from using efficient defluoridation techniques and applying sustainable agricultural practices. The integrated approaches improve knowledge for EU partners, local researchers, farmers and decision makers. The Project through the involvement of SMEs will strengthen the development co-innovative demonstration processes as well as new market opportunities.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENV.2013.6.3-3 | Award Amount: 11.33M | Year: 2014

The project eartH2Observe brings together the findings from European FP projects DEWFORA, GLOWASIS, WATCH, GEOWOW and others. It will integrate available global earth observations (EO), in-situ datasets and models and will construct a global water resources re-analysis dataset of significant length (several decades). The resulting data will allow for improved insights on the full extent of available water and existing pressures on global water resources in all parts of the water cycle. The project will support efficient and globally consistent water management and decision making by providing comprehensive multi-scale (regional, continental and global) water resources observations. It will test new EO data sources, extend existing processing algorithms and combine data from multiple satellite missions in order to improve the overall resolution and reliability of EO data included in the re-analysis dataset. The usability and operational value of the developed data will be verified and demonstrated in a number of case-studies across the world that aim to improve the efficiency of regional water distribution. The case-studies will be conducted together with local end-users and stakeholders. Regions of interest cover multiple continents, a variety of hydrological, climatological and governance conditions and differ in degree of data richness (e.g. the Mediterranean and Baltic region, Ethiopia, Colombia, Australia, New Zealand and Bangladesh). The data will be disseminated though an open data Water Cycle Integrator portal to ensure increased availability of global water resources information on both regional and global scale. The data portal will be the European contributor to the existing GEOSS water cycle platforms and communities. Project results will be actively disseminated using a combination of traditional methods (workshops, papers, website and conferences) and novel methods such as E-learning courses and webinars that promote the use of the developed dataset.

Background: Among the currently used drugs in malaria case management, artemisinin derivatives and primaquine have an impact on the transmissible stages of Plasmodium falciparum. Hence, they reduce the transmission of the parasite from the patient to the mosquitoes. The present study aimed to assess evidence for this hypothesis from controlled trials. Methods. All controlled clinical trials evaluating the transmission blocking activity of artemisinin derivatives and primaquine with or without other antimalarials were included in this systematic review. PubMed, Google Scholar, Web of Science, ScienceDirect, Medscape and the Cochrane library were systematically searched without language, publication status or date restrictions. The literature references were also scanned manually. The last search was run on July 15, 2013. Search terms included artemisinin derivatives, primaquine, malaria transmission, transmission blocking/reducing drugs and mosquito infection. The outcome measure was the mosquito infectivity rate after treatment of patients. Data were compared using odds ratio (OR), in random effects models. Results: Nine trials with a total of 13,831 mosquitoes were included in the meta-analysis. After combining the trials, the transmission of P. falciparum to Anopheles mosquitoes were lower in artesunate, artemether-lumefantrine and primaquine groups as compared with their control counterparts with OR of 0.36 (95% confidence interval (CI), 0.14-0.90), 0.49 (95% CI, 0.31-0.79) and 0.09 (95% CI, 0.01-0.73); respectively. In non-comparative longitudinal studies, the use of a single-dose of primaquine was shown to deter the transmission of malaria briefly. Conclusion: Evidence on the transmission blocking effect of artemisinin derivatives and primaquine is conclusive. Trials evaluating the combined impact of artemisinin derivatives and primaquine on malaria transmission is urgently needed. © 2013 Abay; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

Tsidu G.M.,Addis Ababa Institute of Technology
Journal of Climate | Year: 2012

Recent heightened concern regarding possible consequences of anthropogenically induced global warming has spurred analyses of data aimed at detection of climate change and more thorough characterization of the natural climate variability. However, there is greater concern regarding the extent and especially quality of the historical climate data. In this paper, rainfall records of 233 gauge stations over Ethiopia for the 1978-2007 period are employed in an analysis that involves homogenization, reconstruction, and gridding onto a regular 0.5°×0.5° resolution grid. Inhomogeneity is detected and adjusted based on quantile matching. The regularized expectation-maximization and multichannel singular spectrum analysis algorithms are then utilized for imputation of missing values, and the latter has been determined to have a marginal advantage. Ordinary kriging is used to create a gridded monthly rainfall dataset. The spatial and temporal coherence of this dataset are assessed using harmonic analysis, self-organizing maps, and intercomparison with global datasets. The self-organizing map delineates Ethiopia into nine homogeneous rainfall regimes, which is consistent with seasonal and interannual rainfall variations. The harmonic analysis of the dataset reveals that the annual mode accounts for 55%-85%of the seasonal rainfall variability over western Ethiopia while the semiannual mode accounts for up to 40% over southern Ethiopia. The dataset is also intercompared with Global Precipitation Climatology Project (GPCP), Climate Prediction Center (CPC) Merged Analysis of Precipitation (CMAP), Climatic Research Unit time series version 3 (CRUTS3.0), Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM), and interim ECMWF Re-Analysis (ERA-Interim) rainfall. The correlation of the dataset with global datasets ranges from 0.52 to 0.95 over sparse to dense rain gauge regions. The GPCP rainfall has a small bias and good correlation with the new dataset whereas TRMM and ERA-Interim have relatively large dry and wet biases, respectively. © 2012 American Meteorological Society.

Wang E.,Chalmers University of Technology | Mammo W.,Addis Ababa Institute of Technology | Andersson M.R.,Chalmers University of Technology
Advanced Materials | Year: 2014

Driven by the potential advantages and promising applications of organic solar cells, donor-acceptor (D-A) polymers have been intensively investigated in the past years. One of the strong electron-withdrawing groups that were widely used as acceptors for the construction of D-A polymers for applications in polymer solar cells and FETs is isoindigo. The isoindigo-based polymer solar cells have reached efficiencies up to 7% and hole mobilities as high as 3.62 cm2 V-1 s-1 have been realized by FETs based on isoindigo polymers. Over one hundred isoindigo-based small molecules and polymers have been developed in only three years. This review is an attempt to summarize the structures and properties of the isoindigo-based polymers and small molecules that have been reported in the literature since their inception in 2010. Focus has been given only to the syntheses and device performances of those polymers and small molecules that were designed for use in solar cells and FETs. Attempt has been made to deduce structure-property relationships that would guide the design of isoindigo-based materials. It is expected that this review will present useful guidelines for the design of efficient isoindigo-based materials for applications in solar cells and FETs. This review summarizes isoindigobased polymers and small molecules for bulk-heterojunction solar cells and field-effect transistors (FETs). The structure-property relationships are deduced based on results from the literature and density functional theory (DFT) calculations. Isoindigo-based materials are anticipated to play an important role in the development of solar cells and FETs due to their appropriate energy levels, high absorption coefficients, and mobility. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

The present invention relates to a compound material consisting of a natural zeolite having calcium as an exchangeable cation, in which hydroxyapatite on a nanometric scale is grown in a controlled manner on the surface thereof; to the method by which said compound material is obtained; and to the use thereof for removing fluoride from water in order to make same drinkable. As a result of the aforementioned special characteristics of hydroxyapatite crystals, said material has a very high intrinsic capacity (based on the weight of hydroxyapatite) for removing fluoride. This capacity, combined with the low cost and ease of access to the materials used for preparing same, and with the straightforward nature of the method, means that said material is the perfect candidate for removing fluoride from water having high levels of this contaminant.

Agency: GTR | Branch: NERC | Program: | Phase: Research Grant | Award Amount: 113.27K | Year: 2015

Extending and sustaining access to safe and reliable water services remains central to improving the health and livelihoods of poor people, particularly women, in Africa. Here an estimated 350 million rural inhabitants still have no form of safe drinking water, and depend on poor quality unreliable sources for all their domestic needs. Improving access to water, and helping to achieve new international goals of universal access to safe water hinges on accelerated development of groundwater resources, usually through drilling boreholes and equipping them with handpumps. However, emphasis on new infrastructure has obscured a hidden crisis of failure, with >30% of new sources non-functional within 5-years and many more unreliable. This problem has remained stubbornly persistent over the last four decades, with little sign of sustained progress despite various interventions. Part of the reason for this continued failure is the lack of systematic investigations into the complex multifaceted reasons for failure and therefore the same mistakes are often repeated. The accumulated costs to governments, donors and above all rural people are enormous. Addressing the functionality crisis requires a step-change in understanding of what continues to go wrong. The complex issue must be approached from a truly interdisciplinary viewpoint: combining innovative natural sciences to assess the availability of local water resources and how this changes with seasons and climate; with detailed social science research of how local communities function and make decisions about managing their infrastructure; and understanding of how the engineered structures can degenerate. Underlying these reasons for source failure may be other contributory factors, such as government incentives, the role of the donor community, or long term changes in the demand for water. The overall aim of the project is to build a robust, multi-country evidence base on the causes of the unacceptably high rates of groundwater system and service failure and use this knowledge to deliver a step-change in future functionality. To achieve this aim, our research draws on a novel interdisciplinary approach using the latest thinking and techniques in both natural and social science and applies them to three African countries that have struggled for decades with service sustainability - Uganda, Ethiopia and Malawi. There are five main provide a rigorous definition of functionality of water points which accounts for seasonality, quality and expectations of service; 2. to apply this new definition to Ethiopia, Uganda and Malawi to get a more realistic picture of water point functionality and therefore water coverage figures; 3. to investigate in detail 50 water points in each country by taking apart the water points and pumps, testing the local groundwater conditions, examining the renewability of groundwater and exploring in detail the local water committee; 4. we will also build on this information to forecast future rural water supply coverage by modelling the impact on water points of various potential future pathways; and 5. finally we will use all this information to develop an approach for building resilience into future rural water supply programmes and helping people decide when it is worth rehabilitating failed sources. To carry out this ground breaking research we have brought together a consortium, led by the British Geological Survey, of leading interdisciplinary UK researchers at BGS, KCL, ODI and Cambridge with groundwater academics from three highly regarded African universities (Universities of Addis Ababa, Mekerere and Malawi), and WaterAid, a leading NGO on developing rural water supply services across Africa with a history of innovation. The research has the potential to have a major impact on the delivery of reliable clean water throughout Africa, and if the results can be taken up widely break the pattern of repeated failure.

Agency: GTR | Branch: NERC | Program: | Phase: Research Grant | Award Amount: 188.40K | Year: 2015

Groundwater Futures in Sub-Saharan Africa (GroFutures) will develop the scientific evidence and inclusive groundwater management processes by which groundwater resources can be used sustainably for poverty alleviation in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). It will improve understanding of the volume and renewability of groundwater in SSA, and develop robust models and tools to forecast available groundwater resources under changing climate, land-use and demand scenarios, including expansion of arable land under irrigation. GroFutures will examine current groundwater governance processes and identify pathways toward more sustainable and equitable use of groundwater resources that are reconciled to projections of changing demand and resource availability. It will assemble an international consortium of scientists with an unmatched track record of groundwater research and stakeholder engagement in SSA that both leverages substantial additional investment (£461,000) and engages with research and development communities across Anglophone and Francophone Africa. GroFutures will also establish a Network of African Groundwater Observatories that representing the primary groundwater environments and development governance challenges in SSA that features a new dataset of 25 records of groundwater-level observations that are 2 to 6 decades duration from across SSA enabling the most rigorous analysis of the relationships among climate, land-use and groundwater recharge that has ever been conducted in the tropics. Dedicated basin observatories will be constructed that will enable very detailed monitoring of the physical process by which groundwater is replenished and application of a new method for quantifying the volume of groundwater in African aquifers thereby overcoming fundamental limitations in present knowledge of groundwater in SSA. GroFutures will also employ an innovative and participatory approach to the management of groundwater which will enable for explicit consideration ofthe views of poor people in making decisions over the allocation and development of groundwater resources.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: H2020 | Program: ERC-ADG | Phase: ERC-ADG-2015 | Award Amount: 1.03M | Year: 2016

Why do people convert to Islam? The contemporary relevance of this question is immediately apparent.Becoming Muslim will transform our knowledge about Islamisation processes and contexts through archaeological research in Harar, Eastern Ethiopia, and examine this in comparison to other regions in sub-Saharan Africa via publication and a major conference. Assessing genuine belief is difficult, but the impact of trade, Saints, Sufis and Holy men, proselytisation, benefits gained from Arabic literacy and administration systems, enhanced power, prestige, warfare, and belonging to the larger Muslim community have all been suggested. Equally significant is the context of conversion. Why were certain sub-Saharan African cities key points for conversion to Islam, e.g. Gao and Timbuktu in the Western Sahel, and Harar in Ethiopia? Archaeological engagement with Islamisation processes and contexts of conversion in Africa is variable, and in parts of the continent research is static. This exciting 4-year project explores, for the first time, Islamic conversion and Islamisation through focusing on Harar, the most important living Islamic centre in the Horn of Africa, and its surrounding region. Islamic archaeology has been neglected in Ethiopia, and is wholly non-existent in Harar. Excavation at 5 key sites: 2 shrines, 2 abandoned settlements, 1 urban site, will permit evaluation of urban Islam, the veneration of saints, pilgrimage and shrine based practices, rural Islam, architecture and jihad, changes in lifeways, and early and comparative evidence for Islam and long-distance trade, through analysis of, e.g. architecture, epigraphy, burial orientation, imported artifacts, and faunal and botanical remains. Although it is fully acknowledged that conversion to Islam and Islamisation processes are not universal, my project is groundbreaking in developing and applying a transferable methodology for the archaeological explanation of Becoming Muslim in sub-Saharan Africa.

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