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Best of Both Worlds: Integrating Scientific and Indigenous Weather and Seasonal Climate Forecast for Adaptive Water and Food Production in Ghana
Group: Water Systems and Global Change, Wageningen University
Promotor: prof. dr F Ludwig
Co-promotor: dr SE Werners and dr GR Biesbroek
This study was carried out in Northern Ghana and addresses the focal question: How can climate information services be improved when farmers and scientist co-produce? It aimed at improving the reliability and acceptability of forecast information by integrating indigenous and scientific forecast. Using multi-method research approach, I proposed a framework for second generation climate services that have the potential to facilitate the provision of relevant and accurate forecast information that manages user expectation and strengthens collaboration between information providers and users. Farmers information needs are linked to the type and timing of farm decision making. Model based seasonal forecasts have the potential to provide relevant information at farmers most preferred lead time for improved farm-level decision making. Farmers’ indigenous forecast techniques are not intuitive but rational and improve with age and experience. Farmers and Ghana Meteorological agency (GMet) are on the average able to accurately forecast one out of every three daily rainfall events. Similar results were obtained at the seasonal timescale except that GMet was unable to accurately predict rainfall cessation for the period of study. Also, the integrated probability forecast (IPF) method developed is able to integrate both indigenous and scientific forecast into an objective and reliable forecast information that is acceptable by farmers.
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