‘Climate Frontiers’ podcast: Connecting science and society

30 July 2021 | Story Staff writer. Photo Je’nine May. Read time 2 min.
UCT’s Climate System Analysis Group presents a podcast series exploring the latest thinking, approaches and debates in climate science.
UCT’s Climate System Analysis Group presents a podcast series exploring the latest thinking, approaches and debates in climate science.

In their podcast series, Climate Frontiers, the Climate System Analysis Group (CSAG) at the University of Cape Town (UCT) presents an accessible perspective on topics often hidden behind academic language, connecting science and society for positive change.

Through conversations with researchers at the CSAG, and occasionally with partners across Africa and internationally, the climate research centre discusses a range of topics from within physical climate science, through to social science and philosophy.

In the first episode, “The Ethics of Climate Services”, PhD candidate Jessica Lee is in discussion with the CSAG’s deputy director, Dr Christopher Jack; the Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries’ Tlou Ramaru; and the South African Weather Services’ Dr Tracey Laban. The three interviewees were all involved in a recent project exploring some of the challenges at the intersection of climate services and ethics. 

The second episode, “The Complex Challenge”, is a conversation between Dr Anna Taylor from UCT’s African Climate and Development Initiative, and climate scientists Professor Bruce Hewitson (CSAG director) and Dr Izidine Pinto (CSAG researcher). They discuss why climate change is such a complex problem and what the CSAG and others are doing to make sense of the complexity to help make climate information clearer, more accessible and usable or actionable by those confronting climate risks.

In the third episode, “CORDEX‑AFRICA”, the focus is on Coordinated Regional Downscaling Experiment (CORDEX) – and, in particular, CORDEX‑Africa and the role it has played in developing the capacity of African scientists to conduct climate‑related research in Africa. It features CSAG researcher Dr Chris Lennard.

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Climate change


The University of Cape Town is an internationally renowned hub for climate change research and training. Our work is a strategic response to urgent knowledge and capacity needs on the African continent – climate change impacts have severe implications for economic and social development, and Africa is particularly vulnerable. Greater expertise is needed to understand the challenges and to design, evaluate and sustain solutions. Engaged research can help society innovate and support effective climate policies and strategies.

This series of articles shows how UCT researchers are working with governments, civil society and the private sector to co-produce knowledge that is impactful, moving us towards a more resilient African society.


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