Climate change is a global problem and no region on earth can escape from its effects (IPCC, 2021). It will have long-term consequences in the future because greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere cannot be immediately limited to the amount that the earth’s soil, plants, and oceans can absorb naturally. Changing rainfall patterns and floods in particular are likely to have significant consequences on the environment, society, food security, as well as the wider economy. Significant impacts are also expected for the water resources, agriculture, and health sectors. Increased temperatures, flooding, increased aridity, and soil erosion puts both urban and rural communities at risk, particularly for poor and vulnerable groups. Environmental degradation has impacted water resources, and the loss of biodiversity and ecosystem services constitutes serious obstacles to country’s’ continued development and responsible management of its natural resources, which is also likely to impact the country’s tourism sector.

Ethiopia’s climate is known to be complex due to its geographic position as well as orographic conditions as well as anthropogenic climate change impacts. There is also significant temporal variability. Ethiopia is one of the most vulnerable countries to climate change and variability due to its high dependence on rain-fed agriculture and natural resources as well as relatively low adaptive capacity. According to Ethiopia’s National Adaptation Program of Action (NAPA), the agricultural, water resources, and human health sectors will be most negatively impacted by climate change. NAPA additionally has identified the infrastructure sector is particularly vulnerable to climate change impacts. Thus, to address the problems caused by climate change, a well-integrated and coordinated approach is required.

This again needs a holistic research in various climate-sensitive sectors to address climate related problems. In addition, education, training, capacity building, and greenhouse gases (GHG) emission inventory, as well as active participation in the preparation and/or review of an existing policy, strategy, and action in climate-related issues are important components of intervention.

In view of this, various units of AAU conduct climate and air pollution related courses and researches in a fragmented manner. For instance, current and future climate change and variability, impact on water, land resources and health carried out in the center for environmental science (CES), IGSSA, and School of earth science separately. Research in Greenhouse (GHG) gases inventory carried out in department of plant biology and natural resources management as well as paleoclimatology studies. Climate change related research and education also carried out in other department/centers of AAU. For instance, Climate impact, vulnerability, mitigation as well as policy and strategy in geography and environmental study, center for food security, and air pollution and its health impact at the college of Health science. African Center for Disaster Risk Management conducted research on community vulnerability to climate change shocks.

Cognizant of these facts, the Climate Science Centre (CSC) of AAU is established to create a favorable common platform for experts working on various climate issues across programs, centers, departments and schools in the university (AAU). The center is also an essential platform to liaison AAU with public, governmental and non-governmental organization at national and international level. The center is aiming at serving the public sectors as knowledge hub in climate science.


As mentioned earlier, research, education, training and community services in climate science are performed at different units of AAU. However, there is no coordination across these academic or research units. The activities in these individual units are fragmented and often lead to duplication of efforts, waste of resource and time. The research outputs may also lack details and problem-solving capacity. It is also known that the various experts are not working together to produce results that will help to formulate

knowledge-based policies and straggles. Information is diverse and often inconsistent. Lack of a designated center that conducts evaluation of existing data, identification of areas of research and conduct of networking is considered as the drawback. Moreover, linking climate change research with education and training is found to be important. However, the nation’s general and higher education curriculum pertaining to climate science lacks the involvement of professionals in the field. Credible institutions that deliver tailored training for different sectors in climate science related issues are not available. Additionally, the dissemination of knowledge to the public from a credible site is useful. However, there is no institution that brings all the required professionals onboard to disclose the information in need. In this regard, CSC is established to alleviate much of the outlined problems. CSC can help in looking for financial aid and capacity building to achieve the above goals. It can link to other local, regional, and international efforts to assist in the development of research agendas with national relevance within a global context

In general, CSC will serve as a research and training hub, bringing professionals from all units together to solicit resources and connect with national and international universities, public, governmental, and non-governmental organizations. It is well known that the different units of AAU are established to carry out the three main objectives of the university: teaching, research and community services. However, CSC has no overlapping task with these units and it only plays coordination role across the different units in university, linking with national and international partners and stakeholders and giving emphasis to some overlooked activities in climate science.

Vision, Mission and Guiding Principles

Vision: To build a regional climate science research and training center of excellence that is internationally credible and providing service to the public.

Mission: CSC will fill the coordination gap in research, training and knowledge transfer in the natural and human settings in the region with a goal to generate information that helps adaptation and mitigation for public and policy consumption.

Guiding Principles:

  • Serving the scientific community by contributing in knowledge generation, dissemination and utilization
  • Working to solve societal problems and contribute to ensuring a sustainable future for humanity and nature
  • Producing results that positively influence and guide policy decisions to the benefit of society and the environment


  • Professionalism
  • Accountability
  • Participatory/Impartiality
  • Multi-disciplinarily/Inclusiveness
  • Credible assessment/Reputability
  • Transparency
  • Critical thinking


General Objectives

The overarching objective of establishing CSC is to help AAU in contributing to the national and global climate change research and awareness efforts in a coordinated and fully organized manner. The effort will be done by using and enhancing the existing capacity and expertise in the CNCS as well as setting partnership with other relevant units of AAU, partners and stakeholders.

Specific Objectives

The CSC will be designed to specifically achieve the following objectives.

  • Liaise and coordinate climate change research activities that are carried out in the different departments/institute/school and programs within AAU.
  • Coordinate staff members with similar interests and expertise from various departments/institute/school and programs within AAU to work together in developing climate change research projects
  • Serve as an information processing and database center by collecting climate change related data from various sources within and outside AAU
  • Provide financial and technical support to the graduate programs with in AAU.
  • Facilitate the PhD and MSc research in climate Science in the Colleges’ graduate programs
  • Facilitate formation of a climate change research network at national, regional and

    International levels

  • Assist and facilitate the integration of climate issues in the curriculum.
  • Discriminate information through publication, conference and workshop
  • Liaise with other organizations at the national level (e.g. Universities, EPA, NMI, MoA, MoWR, MoH, MoE, MoPD, etc…) and international levels (e.g., International Universities and research Organizations,UN agencies, WMO, and NSF, NOAA, etc.).
  • Serve as a national database center for the country
  • Contribute to the capacity building efforts to enable national and regional climate negotiators