CENTRE FOR POPULATION AND ENVIRONMENTAL DEVELOPMENT

   

Motto: Research for Development

   
Development Partners
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RESEARCH

ACTION RESEARCH ON CLIMATE CHANGE IN THE WETLAND AND COASTAL REGIONS

Despite the challenge posed by climate change to development in Nigeria, there is as yet no national policy on climate change, especially with respect to vulnerability and adaptation which are the key challenges that must be tackled. In order for policies and action programmes to be put in place research needs to be carried out. CPED under this theme will focus its action research primarily on vulnerability and adaptation in the wetland and coastal region of Nigeria. There are several research gaps in the understanding of vulnerability and adaptation of the poor primary producers at the local level to the impact of climate change in the wetland and coastal regions of Nigeria. These include: information on climate change and knowledge about impact of climate change. CPED’s research program on this theme during the TTI phase 2 period will entail the development of inter disciplinary research framework and development of the framework for robust adaptation strategies. The limited research on vulnerability assessment and adaptation issues is done mainly in the academic domain without strategies designed to engage policy and decision makers. Thus most of the existing studies have not bridge the gap between research and policy. The use of research in framing effective policy strategies requires close involvement of the key stakeholders and decision makers and also vulnerable population at every stage of the process and not as an afterthought. CPED’s research will be “demand driven”. Implementation of adaptation strategies requires a close involvement between the research and the stakeholder community in vulnerability assessment and adaptation strategies. CPED will closely engage with these stakeholders from the very beginning and at every stage of the project and not as an afterthought. In the context of CPED’s action research approach over the years, a number of pilot adaptation programnes will be carried out in the communities of the wetland and coastal region of Nigeria. Theses intervention programmes will be carried out with service providers in public and private sectors and civil society organizations. The specific problems to be addressed by the pilot activities will depend partly on the finding of the vulnerability assessment. 

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ACTION RESEARCH ON GENDER AND DEVELOPMENT

Gender equality and empowered women in particular are catalysis for multiplying development efforts. While gender inequality is a universal phenomenon, and aspects of gender inequality exist in all countries, it manifests itself differently in each context, and is caused by a multiplicity of factors. Although, some policies have been developed and substantial resources invested to strengthen women contribution to the Nigerian economy, a holistic approach to the social and economic empowerment of women is yet to be articulated by both the federal and state governments in Nigeria. In Nigeria lack of solid evidence on gender and development with respect to what works and what does not work to remove barriers in different socio-economic context hampers efforts to enhance women’s social and economic lives and to improve their social and economic potentials. We need to also understand better how growth might be harnessed to close persistent gender gaps in opportunities, earnings, assets, and productivity.  Furthermore, we need to examine these issues I different cultural and geo-political zones in Nigeria. CPED’s research program will focus on women’s social and economic empowerment- at home, in labour markets, entrepreneurship and the care economy- and the patterns of economic growth that benefit women’s economic empowerment in different low income contexts. CPED’s research will address key evidence and new and cutting edges knowledge gaps through the generation of rigorous empirical evidence and new and cutting edge knowledge that can better inform policies, and practices that can promote positive change, and allow policy makers to formulate more effective ways of addressing these barriers. The research programme aims to increase Nigerian policies and programs that improve economic opportunities and outcomes for poor women especially in remote communities, which in turn can facilitate the enhanced uptake of such policies and programmes. A number of pilot/intervention activities will be carried out in collaboration with partners in localities where research is carried out.

ACTION RESEARCH ON HEALTH SYSTEMS AND HEALTH CARE DELIVERY

Despite Nigeria’s recent interest in the improvement of the country’s health care situation, the health care system is characterized by a myriad of problems. Health services throughout Nigeria are delivered through a weak health care system which is characterized by inequitable distribution of resources, decaying infrastructure, poor management of human resource for health, negative attitude of health care providers, weak referral systems; poor coverage with high impact cost-effective interventions, poor utilization of the capacity of the private sector including NGOs, inadequate community involvement and empowerment, gaps in governance and effective leadership of the health sector, lack of integration and poor supportive supervision. There is evidence of the deterioration of the pivotal, primary health care-based health care system, which also integrates management of common ailments such as malaria and other communicable diseases. Most of the expenditure on health are consumed by the tertiary and secondary health sectors at the expenses of the primary health sector which provide basic services for over 75 per cent of the population particularly women and children. CPED’s research programme will focus on an examination of Nigeria’s health system with special attention on primary health care. Nigeria’s health system is confronted with lack of knowledge on many issues that should guide policy making on health care delivery. CPED’s research will contribute to a body of evidence on the strengthening of health system in Nigeria that can influence developing and implementing policies on equitable access to heath care. The specific objectives of the research programme address knowledge development (research), knowledge translation (influencing policy) and capacity building (Training and mentoring of junior researchers) components. The research programme aims to increase Nigerian policy makers and other stakeholders’ knowledge of evidence-based policies and programs that improve primary health care delivery, which in turn can facilitate the enhanced uptake of such policies and programmes. CPED’s research programme on primary health care system will engage with key policy makers and agencies working on related themes, identify areas of mutual learning, and inform debates and programming priorities to help shape public policies in ways that produce better development outcomes for rural communities and other deprived groups in different parts of Nigeria. Intervention programmes may address challenges facing primary health care in different parts of Nigeria.

ACTION RESEARCH ON EDUCATION AND DEVELOPMENT

Nigeria recognizes the need to provide secondary education on a larger scale and build on the primary education gains connected to the millennium development goals and education for all initiatives. However, while primary schools are widespread, with near equal numbers of boys and girls enrolled, secondary schools remain scarce, are mostly in large rural settlements and urban areas, and enroll fewer girls than boys and too few poor and disadvantage children. Although secondary education is the level from which most youth will enter the labour force, it is still largely conceptualized as a route to tertiary education and has relatively high per student costs compared to primary education. While recognizing the challenges facing tertiary education in Nigeria, CPED’s research programme during the phase 2 of TTI support will be predominantly on secondary education which is obviously the bedrock of the education system. Research gaps on secondary education in Nigeria that need answers including: how to increase demand, improve teacher skills, promote employment-relevant skills, and support alternative models of learning for learners in low-income settings. There is therefore an urgent need to support and build the evidence base for new models that deliver quality, relevant, and accessible secondary learning to often-neglected populations, including the poor, girls, those living with disabilities, those in areas affected by conflict, and other disadvantaged groups. CPED’s research programme aims to address key evidence and knowledge gaps including research on increasing demand for learning at the secondary level improving teacher effectiveness and promoting employment-relevant skills. The research programme aims to increase Nigeria policy makers and other stakeholders’ knowledge of evidence-based policies and programmes that improve secondary education which in turn can facilitate the enhanced uptake of such policies and programme. A number of intervention programmes will be carried out in collaboration with partners in localities where research is carried out.

ACTION RESEARCH ON GROWTH, DEVELOPMENT AND EQUITY

In the 1970s, a new wave of development thinking generated the “basic needs” approach which focused on the direct provision of “essential” commodities and services, thus providing a counterweight to per capita income growth as a primary objective of development. The idea that a narrow focus on income was not justified received a significant boost from World Bank research in the 1970s which examined such concepts as “redistribution with growth” and “growth with equity”. In the context of Nigeria recent statistics indicate that the country seems to have a systemic structure of inequity; only such a system would permit just 20 per cent of the population to own 65 per cent of national assets while as much as 70 per cent of the same populations are peasant rural workers and artisans. As Nigeria continues to face the challenge of inequality in development, effective and evidence-based policies on promoting equity in development are of vital importance. Research on poverty reduction which is country-specific is essential. CPED,s research programme aims to address key evidence and knowledge gaps including research on regional patterns of development across the various geo-political zones in the country as manifested in highly unequal income distribution and differential access to basic infrastructure, education, training and job opportunities. CPED’s research programme aims to increase Nigerian policy makers and other stakeholders’ knowledge of evidence-based policies and programmes that improve equity in development across the country which in turn can facilitate the enhanced uptake of such policies and programmes. CPED will closely engage with these stakeholders from the very beginning and at every stage of the implementation of the research programme.

ACTION RESEARCH ON NIGER DELTA REGION, PEACE BUILDING AND DEVELOPMENT

When oil exploration began in the Niger Delta region in the late 1950s, the people expected that it would make a huge difference to their lives. The machines and technology that they saw indicated that their lives would change positively. However after over fifty years, they realized that oil had brought misfortune and misery. Their natural resource had become a curse. Their land was taken for exploration, exploitation, pipelines and platforms. The negative externalities of oil  and particularly the devastation of land and water upon which the livelihood sources, livelihoods and specifically primary economies of farming, fishing and hunting depend has deepened poverty, unemployment. These conditions of marginality have combined to create multifarious crises in the region. The amnesty programme as a political settlement of the Niger Delta’s violent conflicts was an attempt at the resolution of conflicts and peace building in the region. Despite the major innovation associated with the amnesty programme which has been on since 2009, less attention has been paid in the literature to the systematic analysis of the sustainability of the programme and the lessons that can be learnt in its implementation in similar sub-national and national political settlements in conflict areas in other parts of Nigeria where new forms of violence have emerged in recent years. The focus of CPED research is to critically interrogate the amnesty and the political settlement leading to it, in terms of perceptions, discourses and conversations that undergird it; the nature of bargains, understanding and consensus constructed around it; the content and methods of the amnesty; the nature of inclusiveness, equity, justness and gender sensitivity; the levels of legitimacy and sustainability of the settlement; the challenges of compliance, implementation and accountability, and the impacts on violence mitigation, conflict resolution, peace building, development of the region and state building. The research programme aims to increase Nigerian policy makers and other stakeholder’s knowledge of evidence-based policies and programmes that will contribute to sustainable peace and development of the Niger Delta region.