Malawi is highly exposed to weather and climate risks. In combination with elevated levels of poverty, food insecurity and reliance on rain-fed agriculture, dry spells and floods regularly lead to emergencies. This is a predictable and chronic problem, yet it is managed as a repeated crisis. Breaking the recurrent cycle of crises requires a transformative shift in policy and development support, from frequent and costly humanitarian responses to a greater emphasis on risk reduction and preparedness. Longer-term investments should address the root causes of chronic poverty and build sustainable strategies for adapting to climate change.
In this context, the UK is investing in the five-year (2018-2023) ‘Building Resilience and Adapting to Climate Change’ (BRACC) programme. The long-term impact of the programme is to contribute to a reduction in extreme poverty and to ending the recurrent cycle of hunger and humanitarian assistance in Malawi. The programme aims to do this by taking market-based approaches to improve people’s livelihoods, and by developing scalable social safety net systems that respond predictably to weather and climate-related shocks.
The BRACC Knowledge and Policy Hub was established in 2020 to help the programme operate in a flexible and adaptive way. The Hub supports learning and critical decision-making throughout the programme. By doing so, it aims to inform stakeholder actions and policies on resilience and adaptation to climate change in Malawi.
The BRACC Hub is led by LTS International and comprises the Centre for Environmental Policy and Advocacy (CEPA), the Centre for Development Management (CDM), and the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) as core partners. The Hub is managed by a cross-organisational team including Katharine Vincent, Kirsty Wilson, Simon Mercer, Jennifer Leavy, David Mkwambisi, and Elizabeth Schultz Venable through LTS International; Bright Sibale through CDM; and Lena Weingӓrtner and Mairi Dupar through ODI.
ODI directs the Hub in research and strategic knowledge management activities. Other areas of engagement for the Hub include: monitoring and evaluation; technical assistance; policy analysis and advocacy; programme coordination functions; and outreach.