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Climate Resilient Development in Africa: Responding to the IPCC Report on Adaptation to Climate Change

April 27, 2022


The recently released Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Working Group II, Climate Change 2022: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability, report underscores the urgency for rapid, deep and sustained action on climate adaptation to ensure the world’s poorest countries are not caught off guard by worsening climate impacts. It assesses the impacts of climate change, looking at ecosystems, biodiversity, and human communities at global and regional levels and notes that action is most urgent in Africa, where accelerated effort is required to adapt to climate change to avoid mounting loss of life, biodiversity and infrastructure. This seminal report offers new insights on possible pathways for policymakers, business leaders and others to ramp up their efforts to tackle the climate crisis at the scale and urgency required. 

Join World Bank Africa leadership, IPCC authors, and climate activists on May 9th for an overview of the IPCC report’s findings and discuss how we can scale-up transformative action in agriculture, water, energy, fisheries, and forests. 

  • Debra Roberts

    Debra Roberts

    Co-Chair, Working Group II, IPCC

    Prof. Debra Roberts holds a PhD in urban biogeography and is currently head of the Sustainable and Resilient City Initiatives Unit in eThekwini Municipality (Durban, South Africa). She was a lead author of Chapter 8 (Urban Areas) and a contributing author to Chapter 12 (Africa) of Working Group II’s contribution to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). She was elected Co-Chair of Working Group II in 2015. Under her co-leadership, Working Group II published the IPCC Special Report on Ocean and the Cryosphere in a Changing Climate (SROCC) in 2019 and contributed to the Special Reports on “Climate Change and Land” and “Global warming of 1.5°C in 2018. She was a member of the Scientific Steering Committee of the IPCC co-sponsored International Conference on Climate Change and Cities in 2018 and IPCC-IPBES co-sponsored workshop on “Biodiversity and Climate Change” in 2020. Prof Roberts co-led the Scientific Steering Committees of the IPCC-UNHabitat-GCom co-sponsored Innovate for Cities Conference and the IPCC-ICOMOS- UNESCO international co-sponsored meeting on Culture, Heritage and Climate Change, both held in 2021. Prof. Roberts is an Honorary Professor at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in the School of Life Sciences and has been an advisor to the Global Commission on Adaptation, United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) and the United Nations Secretary General’s 2019 Climate Summit. She was a member of the South African United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) negotiating team until December 2015, and has sat on various international advisory bodies focused on climate change issues in cities (e.g., the Rockefeller Foundation’s Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network and UN-Habitat’s 2011 ‘Cities and Climate Change’ Global Report). In 2019 she was included in a list of the World’s 100 Most Influential People in Climate Policy.

    Lisa Schipper

    Dr. Lisa Schipper

    University of Oxford, IPCC Coordinating Lead Author

    Dr Lisa Schipper is an Environmental Social Science Research Fellow in the Environmental Change Institute at the University of Oxford. Her research explores the interlinkages between climate change and human development, what causes people to be vulnerable to climate change in developing countries, and the barriers and enablers for people to adapt to the changes in climate. By examining how development affects the extent to which people are likely to be affected by climate change, she seeks to address the question of whether fair and just development is possible in a changing climate. Her research has shown how understanding socio-cultural and other underlying development factors that drive vulnerability to climate change is vital for identifying the most effective adaptation strategies, but that this knowledge is rarely present in adaptation planning. Recent work (Eriksen et al., 2021) shows how adaptation strategies can end up making people more, rather than less, vulnerable. Other work focuses on the complexities of understanding maladaptation (Schipper, 2020; Magnan et al., 2020) and explores the challenges that remain with respect to understanding how to connect climate change and development (Schipper, Eriksen et al., 2020; Schipper, Tanner et al., 2020). Other research has explored the way in which religious belief influences people's perceptions of hazards and willingness to take action (Schipper, 2010; Schipper et al., 2014; Schipper, 2015). These findings underscore that to achieve climate resilient development, funding agencies, development actors and climate policymakers to engage more with what drives vulnerability to climate change. Dr. Schipper holds a PhD in Development Studies from University of East Anglia, and undertook a Post-Doctoral Fellowship at the International Water Management Institute in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Lisa is also a Research Associate with the Overseas Development Institute in London and an Associate with Stockholm Environment Institute Asia Centre in Bangkok, where she was a Senior Research Fellow from 2008-2013.

    Agnes Kalibata

    Agnes Kalibata

    Agricultural Scientist & Policymaker, President of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), Rwanda

    Ms. Kalibata served as Rwanda's minister of agriculture and animal resources from 2008-2014 During her tenure, she advocated for the use of science-based approaches to agriculture to increase food production and improve food security, with a focus on small farmers. Since September 2014, she has served as president of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA). This African-led organization works to improve food security and incomes of 30 million faming households in 11 African countries by 2021 through better credit access. She has served in multiple capacities such as permanent secretary of Rwanda's Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources; sMinister of State in Charge of Agriculture and full Minister of Agriculture and Animal Resources.She served on the International Food Policy Research Institute's Advisory Council and managed a World Bank project in Rwanda. Kalibata has been a member of the International Fertilizer Development Center (IDFC)'s board of directors since 2008.She is also a member of many national and international boards including for the University of Rwanda, Africa Risk Capacity, the World Economic Forum's Global Agenda Council, the Global Commission on Adaptation and the Malabo Montpellier Panel of Agriculture and Food Security Experts. In 2019, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres appointed Kalibata as his special envoy for the 2021 Food Systems Summit. In 2012, Kalibata was awarded the Yara Prize (now called the Africa Food Prize), which recognizes an outstanding individual or institution leading the effort to change the reality of farming in Africa.

    Adenike Oladosu

    Adenike Oladosu

    Founder: I Lead Climate, Nigeria

    Oladosu Adenike is an ecofeminist, climate justice activist & and eco-reporter. She advocates for climate action using the gender lens. She believes that there can be no ecology without feminism since women are, according to her, almost always the first victims of climate change. Adenike Oladosu founded the I Lead Climate campaign to bring the voice of young Africans to international bodies. This pan-African movement carries out grassroots-based climate action such as the advocacy on the restoration of Lake Chad, raising awareness about climate-induced problems in conflict zones & African societies for disarmament, regional stability & the sustenance of livelihoods. She actively advocates for the most vulnerable, like women in the Sahel forced to walk for miles to find water, due to desertification. The climate justice activist pleads for the restoration of the resources of Lake Chad, where the disappearance of water and other natural resources generates instability, mass migration and violence from jihadist groups. She has been awarded the highest award by Amnesty Nigeria for her fight for climate justice.


    Hafez Ghanem

    Vice President for Eastern and Southern Africa, World Bank

    Hafez Ghanem an Egyptian and French national, is the Vice President of the World Bank for Africa since July 1, 2018. A development expert with over 30 years of experience, Dr. Ghanem leads an active regional portfolio consisting of over 600 projects totaling more than $72 billion. Under his leadership, the World Bank supports inclusive growth and poverty reduction by financing projects that boost human capital, support private sector development, raise agricultural productivity, improve access to infrastructure, build resilience to climate change, and promote regional integration. Intensifying assistance for fragile and conflict-affected states, promoting gender equality, and providing economic opportunities for youth are core to his vision for the Africa Region. Prior to his appointment as Vice President for Africa, Dr. Ghanem served as Vice President of the World Bank for the Middle East and North Africa from 2015 to 2018, overseeing the World Bank’s engagement with 20 countries. Leading up to this, he was a Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution in the Global Economy and Development program leading the Arab economies project, focused on the impact of political transition on Arab economic development. He holds a bachelor’s and master’s degree in Economics from the American University in Cairo and a PhD in Economics from the University of California, Davis. He is fluent in Arabic, English and French.

    Ousmane Diagana, Vice President, Western and Central Africa

    Ousmane Diagana

    Vice President, Western and Central Africa, World Bank

    Ousmane Diagana, a Mauritanian national, is the Regional Vice President for Western and Central Africa as of July 1, 2020. In this position, Mr. Diagana leads relations with 22 countries, and oversees a portfolio of projects, technical assistance and financial resources worth more than $40 billion. Prior to this appointment, Mr. Diagana was the Vice President of the World Bank Group Human Resources. In that role, he provided overall strategic leadership on human resource matters to the entire World Bank Group and oversaw the development and implementation of the World Bank Group People Strategy, and Human Resources policies, programs and services. From October 2015 to January 2018, he was the Vice President for Ethics and Business Conduct (EBC) and Chief Ethics Officer of the World Bank Group. Mr. Diagana is recognized as an organizational leader, personal mentor and a professional role model. He brings to this role a deep knowledge of Bank Group operations, a reputation for innovative and strategic thinking, recognized managerial skills, and country office perspective. Previously, he was World Bank Country Director for Côte d’Ivoire, Burkina Faso, Benin, Guinea, and Togo, based in Abidjan and prior to that he held the position of Country Director for Mali, Niger, Chad, and Guinea, based in Bamako. Between 2006 and 2009, Mr. Diagana was Country Manager in Niger and from 2004 to 2006, he was Program Leader in Morocco. In these capacities, he effectively led diverse, multi-disciplinary teams to deliver innovative strategies and operations —including in fragile and conflict-affected countries. In 2009, Mr. Diagana received the Good Manager Award from the World Bank Group Staff Association in recognition of his leadership skills. Ousmane Diagana joined the World Bank in 1992. He has degrees in economics, finance, and planning, a certificate in education policies and analysis and speaks French, English, Arabic, Soninke, Fulani, and Wolof.


    Arame Tall (moderator)

    Senior Adaptation and Resilience Specialist, Climate Change

    Arame Tall is a Senior Adaptation & Resilience Specialist in the Climate Change Group of the World Bank. Dr. Tall leads coordination of the Bank’s work on Adaptation & Resilience and is the team leader for the World Bank Group’s first of its kind Action Plan on Climate Change Adaptation & Resilience. The new plan significantly boosts support for adaptation and resilience, and represents significantly ramped up ambition from the World Bank Group in this area. Before joining the Bank in 2017, she worked for 15 years in climate adaptation and development, holding senior positions with the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) and the Red cross/Red crescent Climate Centre. She holds a PhD from the Johns Hopkins University-SAIS in Climate Adaptation and African Studies, an MA from Columbia University’s Climate & Society Program, and a BA from Smith College in Anthropology and Environmental Policy.


  • Where: Online
  • Date: Monday, May 9th, 2022
  • Time (EDT): 10:30-11:30 am
  • Time (GMT): 2:30-3:30pm