Monday, March 31, 2014

Thought on Happy April Fool Day - 1st April 2014!

Sometimes it's wise to take your mind to a foolish state. This can bring a pure form of happiness, as only children and grown up fools can build a paradise in their minds...

Good Morning!

Happy April Fool Day!!

Sunday, March 30, 2014

I am waiting for the IPCC's 5th Report with both hope and skepticism!

Dear Friends/Co-sailors,

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC’s) fifth report on impacts of climate change will be released today.  While we are eagerly waiting for the report to come, I thought of posting the following two links in my ‘today’s pick’ section for an understanding of some aspects of it. 

This report from the Guardian titled ‘IPCC report: climate change felt 'on all continents and across the oceans' reports that leaked text of the blockbuster report says changes in climate have already caused impacts on natural and human systems.

It also reports that the IPCC report would say, "In recent decades, changes in climate have caused impacts on natural and human systems on all continents and across the oceans."  Some parts of the world could soon be at a tipping point. For others, that tipping point has already arrived. "Both warm water coral reef and Arctic ecosystems are already experiencing irreversible regime shifts," the approved version of the report will say.

Titled ‘Climate change and health: IPCC reports emerging risks, emerging consensus’, this report highlights the health risks of climate change as have been reported by three contributors to the health chapter.
This chapter, they say, discusses three impact categories in particular:

-          under-nutrition and impaired child development due to reduced food yields
-          injuries, hospitalisations and deaths due to intense heat waves, fires and other weather disasters and
-          shifts in the seasonal duration and spatial range of infectious diseases.

But, as the link rightly points out, very vital point that misses from the discussion is the threat climate change poses to Earth’s life-support system – from declines in regional food yields, freshwater shortage, damage to settlements from extreme weather events and loss of habitable, especially coastal, land. The list goes on: changes in infectious disease patterns and the mental health consequences of trauma, loss, displacement and resource conflict.

We have to wait for the report to come.  My apprehensions are that the report would once again talk about several impacts of climate change but cannot go beyond the conventional approaches of narrowing down them into spheres which are comfortable for the abusive rich countries to handle and get away with their responsibilities. 

Let’s wait and watch!

Thanks and regards,

Ranjan Panda

Good Morning Thought - 31st March 2014

Speak a good word or remain silent... (Prophet Muhammad)

Good Morning!

A warmer globe would lead to warmer tampers, worsening global security!

Dear Friends/Co-sailors,

In today’s pick section of my blog I am sharing this very interesting aspect of climate change as reported in the  Written by Seth Borenstein, AP Science Writer, this piece reports about a UN climate panel report due to be released this Monday.  Top scientists, as the report says, are saying that climate change will complicate and worsen existing global security problems, such as civil wars, strife between nations and refugees.

I have been following some of the security related issues due to climate change, especially those of climate refugees.  Hope this report will throw some new lights and be resourceful.

I also hope you would find this piece useful.

Thanks and regards,

Ranjan Panda
Warmer temperatures can lead warmer tempers, worsening global security, UN report to say


YOKOHAMA, Japan (AP) — In an authoritative report due out Monday a United Nations climate panel for the first time is connecting hotter global temperatures to hotter global tempers. Top scientists are saying that climate change will complicate and worsen existing global security problems, such as civil wars, strife between nations and refugees.

They're not saying it will cause violence, but will be an added factor making things even more dangerous. Fights over resources, like water and energy, hunger and extreme weather will all go into the mix to destabilize the world a bit more, says the report by the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. The summary of the report is being finalized this weekend by the panel in Yokohama.
That's a big change from seven years ago, the last time the IPCC addressed how warming affected Earth, said report lead author Chris Field of the Carnegie Institution of Science in California. The summary that political leaders read in early 2007 didn't mention security issues will, he said, because of advances in research.

"There's enough smoke there that we really need to pay attention to this," said Ohio University security and environment professor Geoff Dabelko, one of the lead authors of the report's chapter on security and climate change.

For the past seven years, research in social science has found more links between climate and conflict, study authors say, with the full report referencing hundreds of studies on climate change and conflict.

The U.S. Defense Department earlier this month in its once-every-four-years strategic review, called climate change a "threat multiplier" to go with poverty, political instability and social tensions worldwide. Warming will trigger new problems but also provide countries new opportunities for resources and shipping routes in places such as the melting Arctic, the Pentagon report says.

After the climate panel's 2007 report, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon wrote that along with other causes, the conflict in the Darfur region of western Sudan "began as an ecological crisis, arising at least in part from climate change. " While the IPCC report this year downplays global warming's role in that particular strife, saying other issues were far more influential, the report's drafts do add that there is "justifiable common concern" that climate change increases the risk of fighting in similar circumstances.

"Climate change will not directly cause conflict — but it will exacerbate issues of poor governance, resource inequality and social unrest," retired U.S. Navy Adm. David Titley, now a Pennsylvania State University professor of meteorology, wrote in an email. "The Arab Spring and Syria are two recent examples."

But Titley, who wasn't part of the IPCC report, says "if you are already living in a place affected by violent conflict — I suspect climate change becomes the least of your worries."

That illustrates the tricky calculus of climate and conflict, experts say. It's hard to point at violence and draw a direct climate link — to say how much blame goes to warming and how much is from more traditional factors like poverty and ethnic differences. Then looking into future is even more difficult.

"If you think it's hard to predict rainfall in one spot 100 years from now, it's even harder to predict social stability," said Jeff Severinghaus, a climate scientist at the Scripps Institution for Oceanography who isn't part of this climate panel. "Obviously that's going to be controversial. The most important thing is that it's going to be talked about."


There could always be a green patch beyond the darkness!

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Sunday Thought - 30th March 2014!

In defence of truth, you don't have to argue to defeat anyone...

Good Morning!

Have a Wonderful Sunday!!

We are with Earth Hour. For us, each hour is Earth Hour...

At my home, we have made it a practice to switch off power for at least two hours each day. During summers, the electricity company does that for us for more than twice that time...

Friday, March 28, 2014

Good Morning Thought - 29th March 2014!

The current form of 'development' is all about pushing the majority of 'resource rich' people to penury, in order to make a few 'cash rich'. This is bad economics...

Good Morning!

Have a Great Weekend!!

PhD Openings Water Governance in Urbanizing Deltas: Delft University of Technology

Dear Friends/Co-sailors,

Just got this information and thought of sharing for friends who might be interested in this very relevant emerging topic.

Best of luck!

Ranjan Panda


The Faculty of Technology, Policy and Management at Delft University of Technology has openings for two PhD candidates for interdisciplinary research projects in the area of water governance. The PhD candidates’ work will be part of projects financed by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO), under its programme “Urbanising Deltas of the World”. The positions are based in Delft, the Netherlands, but will require international travel for field work and workshops.

For more information and applications, please see the attached file or look at the website of Delft University of Technology,

Short descriptions of both positions are given below:

PhD1: Shifting grounds project

Urbanizing deltas in South Asia have seen rapid growth and change. In cities such as Khulna in Bangladesh and Kolkata in India, this has resulted in an increasing pressure on groundwater resources in peri-urban areas. Existing institutions fail to ensure an equitable sharing and sustainable use of groundwater resources in this changing environment, which is evident from the uncoordinated overexploitation of aquifers and a reduced access for vulnerable groups. This project investigates institutional developments, looking at the dynamic interactions between different groundwater users, the groundwater systems and the influence of nearby cities. The insights should help local stakeholders to negotiate institutional transformations that support a more sustainable and equitable use of groundwater resources. Research activities are combined with workshops to strengthen the negotiation capacities of local stakeholders.

The PhD researcher will make an institutional analysis of the existing structures and their functioning, for groundwater management in selected peri-urban villages in Khulna and Kolkata. Part of this analysis is the use of game theoretical models to capture some of the essential characteristics of resulting institutional processes. Based on these analytical insights, contributions should be made to the design and execution of workshops that help build capacity among local stakeholders. For this, the use of serious games is foreseen.

PhD2: Strengthening Strategic Delta Planning project

The sustained development of urbanizing deltas, raises conflicting interests among differing stakeholders that need to be accommodated in an integrated development. Agreeing on strategic choices is difficult and implementation frequently leads to deviations of agreed plans. This project aims to better understand the dynamic delta planning process and the roles of stakeholders, experts and policy-makers therein. A direct link to ongoing delta projects in Bangladesh, the Netherlands and Vietnam ensures the involvement and capacity building of key stakeholders and dissemination of results. Ultimately this should result in well-informed broadly supported plans, the implementation of which contributes to sustainable delta development.

This PhD researcher focuses on the influence of existing policy structures on stakeholder coalitions and their evolution. This is to an important extent a descriptive research, drawing on previous research on learning by stakeholders in policy networks. The emphasis is on analysing the experiences in the Netherlands, adding a comparative perspective using insights from Vietnam and/or Bangladesh. The outcomes should provide insights into patterns of coalition formation and change that can help formulate process guidelines. A practical contribution is foreseen in the form of a rapid assessment approach for existing policy structures and their implications for strategic delta planning processes.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Good Morning Thought - 23rd March 2014!

Truth is always in fashion, power and positions are temporary ornaments. Hold on to truth and you will always be in power...

Good Morning!

Have a Great Sunday!!

Friday, March 21, 2014

Greetings on World Water Day - 22nd March 2014!

Commonwealth Shared Scholarship Scheme for the academic year 2014/15

Dear Friends/Co-sailors,

Fyi, information about this new scholarship programme.

Hope you shall find the following information useful.

Best of luck to potential applicants!



From: Rachel Masters

I am pleased to announce that the University of Sussex is now accepting applications for the Commonwealth Shared Scholarship Scheme for the academic year 2014/15.

This is available to applicants from eligible Commonwealth countries with an offer of a place on the MSc Climate Change and Development.

Please note all applicants must have a first class degree.

To apply for this scholarship you must complete the online application form at:

The deadline for submitting the online applications is Monday, 7th April 2014.

For more details on this scheme, including full details of who is eligible, please see the attached document or click on these links:

This masters is a unique, state of the art course focusing on the implications of climate change for international development. The course is taught by researchers from the world renowned Institute of Development Studies (ranked 1st ‘Best University-Affiliated Think Tank’ in the UK and 3rd in the world*), the Science and Technology Policy Research Unit (SPRU, ranked 6th in world*) and the School of Global Studies. It provides a rich learning experience, combining teaching with professional training workshops, and guest seminars by a diverse range of speakers including researchers, policy makers and practitioners from across the profession.

The course is multidisciplinary and students acquire specialist knowledge on the causes of climate change, the physical and human consequences, and processes to mitigate and adapt to a changing climate in the context of increasingly complex development challenges.

This degree equips both those new to the field and development practitioners with the key skills and knowledge to work within the rapidly expanding climate change profession. Our graduates are highly marketable and are now influencing policy within international development organisations and agencies (including the UN), NGOs, national governments, and the private sector as well as offering consultancy services to a range of private and public organisations. This course offers students the opportunity to undertake their dissertation on a placement with a relevant organisation.

What our students say:

“I was really excited about coming to IDS because of the staff and lecturers, but what makes IDS special to me was the sense of community – I haven’t met one student here that I wasn’t amazed and impressed with.” Nella Canales Trujillo (Climate Finance advisor, Overseas Development Institute, London).

”Overall the experience [at IDS] helped my career development, not only through exposure to world-class teachers and researchers, but also to the varied academic and job experiences of classmates, which contributed to dynamic and exciting debates.”
(Blanche Ting, Senior Specialist in Biotechnology, Department of Science and Technology, South Africa)

”one of the greatest strengths of the MSc in Climate Change and Development at Sussex is the chance it offers its students to benefit from the expertise at Sussex, the Institute of Development Studies (IDS)  and SPRU – Science and Technology Policy Research.  As a result, this course gave me a thorough overview of the subject while particularly encouraging me to question where climate change and development meet
Gloria Cheche (Global Environment Facility Evaluation Office, Washington D.C.)

See also

For further information on the programme and on-line application process access this link:

Please direct queries to For questions about academic aspects of the course, please don’t hesitate to contact Prof. Martin Todd (Geography; or Dr Lars Otto Naess (IDS;

* (University of Pennsylvania: Global Go To Think Tanks Report 2012)

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Good Morning Thought - 21st March 2013!

Election times bring with them the dullest sciolism, standardized rhetoric and dutiful rehearsal of sugar coated lies. As long as we continue to enjoy these all, the nation keeps losing...

Good Morning!

World Water Day 2014 Invite from Mahanadi River: Healthy Mahanadi, Happy Fisherfolks!

Thursday, March 6, 2014

On way to Pattama village, to be part of an water art programme...

On way to Pattama village in Ganjam for a week-long stay there to learn water issues, be part of an water art and awareness programme. Not sure about internet facility in the village...

@ 1.30 pm, 6th March 2014

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Good Morning Thought - 6th March 2014!

There may be times when we are powerless to prevent injustice, but there must never be a time when we fail to protest... (Elie Wiesel, writer, Nobel laureate)

Good Morning!

Thought on women's land right!

Land rights to women is not merely a matter of dignity but of self-reliance, security and much more. Women inherit property of their fathers as much as men do. Why then the society denies them this fundamental right? Time we break the tradition of patriarchal land anarchy. Let's give women their due...

@ Delhi, discussing land right issues... 5th March 2014

Monday, March 3, 2014

Good Morning Thought - 4th March 2014!

One needs to come out of thyself from time to time in order to reveal, repose and rejoice...

Good Morning!

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Good Morning Thought - 3rd March 2014!

Humans in general consider nature conservation activities as charitable acts. Actually its our responsibility to save forests, rivers and other species. In reality, we live a life that runs on Nature's charity...

Good Morning!