Subjects, function, structures and modes of operation of SASSCAL will be defined in close dialogue between the regional partners in adaptation to the respective regional requirements.

SASSCAL aims at reaching across boundaries. The exchange of information and future cooperation will be sought with regional and international organisations and initiatives in the field of research and development. Leadership of the centre will be assumed by African and German scientists in partnership.


SASSCAL intends to cover a variety of research issues in state-of-the-art climate change and land management research, responding to the regional definition of needs and demands.Research will be geared towards filling current regional or local gaps in integrated knowledge and will be coordinated with and linked to running cooperative national, regional and international programmes.
The research activities will aim at:

  • integrating research on land and resource management and climate change to achieve new added value for sustainable development in the region
  • linking science and theory to practice and decision-making processes in land use, resource management and climate change risk mitigation and adaptation
  • compiling, analysing and disseminating best practice as well as developing and demonstrating the feasibility of adapted land management systems and strategies.

These planned research activities, as well as the other planned interventions, will be refined based on the outcomes of the national workshops planned during the next few months.

Capacity Development

Through integration of application-oriented research, policy consultations and capacity development, SASSCAL will contribute substantially towards strengthening and further developing an African knowledge society and, thus, prevent brain drain by creating attractive research facilities in the region.

This will be accomplished by:

  • facilitating academic education and training of African scientists (PhD programmes, Graduate Schools, fellowships, e.g. in cooperation with existing programmes and institutions)
  • specific capacity building (e.g. seminars, workshops; training of local experts and disseminators including training of non-academic partners).

Regional Advisory and Information Services and Products

SASSCAL intends to create and interlink data centres in order to:

  • make data and information available for further scientific use as well as support mutual data exchange with relevant authorities, agencies and organizations
  • generate, compile, analyze and process relevant data on climate, water cycle, soil, biodiversity, eco-system goods and services, land use related energy, demographic and other socio-economic parameters in cooperation with national and if required with international agencies
  • develop, implement and analyze regional models.

In order to meet the demands of regional and local stakeholders engaged in the implementation (e.g. farmers’ associations, public authorities, municipalities, NGOs, national and international development agencies, etc.)


  • help in developing scientific capacities as well as advisory and implementation skills within existing national, regional and local structures.
  • carry out outreach activities or specific measures to enhance capacities of policy makers and society to include scientifically sound knowledge-based products into everyday decision making processes.