CEES Extra seminar: Current research at Addis Ababa University - strengthening education and research programs in conservation biology together with CEES
By Bezawork Afework and Afework Bekele from Department of Zoological Sciences (DZS) at Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia
Norwegian Partnership Programme for Global Academic Cooperation (NORPART) granted 4,884,578 NOK to strengthen education and research in ecology and biodiversity conservation through mutual student mobility between the Department of Zoological Sciences (DZS) at Addis Ababa University and Centre for Ecological and Evolutionary Synthesis (CEES), Department of Biosciences (IBV), at the University of Oslo (UiO) with other partners including Bahir Dar University (BDU), University of Bergen (UiB), Ethiopian Wolf Conservation Program (EWCP), Guassa Gelada Research Project (GGRP), and the Simien Mountains Gelada Research Project (SMGRP) from January 2019 to December 2023. The project primarily focus is to train 41 MSc students (18 from DZS, 8 from BDU and 12 from CEES and 3 from UiB) in ecology, evolution and biodiversity conservation. The project also will give an opportunity for 17 PhD/MSc students (12 MSc/PhD students from CEES and UiB and 5 Ethiopian MSc/PhD students) for short term training up to 3 months. In addition, this project aims to update the MSc curriculum in Ecological and Systematic Zoology at DZS and BDU to enable students learn advanced ecological study techniques and data analysis tools that are currently lacking at DZS and BDU in ecological studies.
Currently, the Department of Zoological Sciences in its Ecological and Systematic Zoology graduate program (MSc and PhD), trains students for the purpose of producing competent and able animal ecologists who could be able to serve the Nation at large in areas of wildlife teaching and research, biodiversity conservation, environmental and wildlife protection, and various other related fields. In the 2017/18 academic year, seven MSc and six PhD students completed their studies where research topics of the graduate program focused on avian and mammalian ecology, threats and conservation in a variety of habitats including wetlands, forest ecosystems, community conservation areas and National Parks.