Okereke purses International Academy of Sciences fellow


Okereke purses International Academy of Sciences fellowIn appreciation of his exceptional contributions to science and its advancement in developing nations, Prof. Chukwumerije Okereke has been chosen as a Fellow of The World Academy of Sciences for the advancement of science in poor countries (UNESCO-TWAS).

Okereke, who was born in Nigeria, is the director of the Center for Climate Change and Development at Alex Ekwueme Federal University Ndufu-Alike, Nigeria, as well as a professor of global governance and public policy at Bristol University in the United Kingdom.

He is a well-known, internationally renowned expert on international development and global climate governance, with a focus on the fairness of the international climate regime and equitable social transitions to the green economy.

In the framework of climate policy and the transition to a green economy, Okereke has a proven track record of doing innovative and highly influential research aimed at comprehending and resolving systemic impediments to economic and social inclusion.

Through his various works that focus on the activities of non-nation state actors in climate governance, he has advanced the theory of climate governance; (ii) advanced knowledge and practice of climate governance and green growth transitions in Africa, where his work has had a far-reaching impact on public policy and practice across the continent; and (iii) advanced understanding of how different conceptions of justice influence global climate governance and the implications for climate-resilient sustainable development in developing countries.

Along with working with a wide range of stakeholders, he also designed the African Unions' Adaptation Initiative, drafted Nigeria's climate change law, modelled Nigeria's long-term low-carbon development strategy, and created the continent's first national green growth plan for the Government of Rwanda.

As the Coordinating Lead Author of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Working Group III Sixth Assessment Report, among other high-profile global scientist assessment projects and networks, Professor Okereke's academic merit and status as a leader in international research are confirmed.

He is a Senior Academic Visitor at the University of Oxford and a visiting professor at the London School of Economics.

Additionally, he is the coordinator of the African Forum Climate Change, Energy and Development (AFCEED), the premier African network of academics, decision-makers, and practitioners focusing on climate change and sustainable transitions in Africa. He is also a key member of the Safe and Just Transformation Working Group of the Global Earth Commission.

"I am delighted to have been elected Fellow of The World Academy of Sciences for the advancement of science in developing countries (UNESCO-TWAS)," Okereke remarked in response to receiving the accolade.

It is very meaningful to me because I have always been motivated to draw attention to the difficulties poor nations have in combating climate change while simultaneously pursuing economic growth, as well as the chances to use climate action to boost resilience and spur economic growth.

The colonial heritage and an unfair international economic system that benefits developed nations provide developing nations with a number of difficulties. I think that by approaching climate governance through a justice framework, we can address not only the problem of climate pollution but also the more fundamental issue of global equity and fairness, which is necessary to guarantee that every person, no matter where they are born, may live a good life.

I was raised in an extremely remote area in Nigeria's old east. I went barefoot to school most of the time, played in the rain while nude, swam and drank from the brownish local river, studied under the large akparata tree in the school, went on age-appropriate rabbit and rat hunts, and sang under the moonlight with other kids.

"I was happy to grow up in a natural setting, and I am driven to ensure that, despite all the benefits it offers, economic progress does not put our planet's environment and human lives in jeopardy.

"This acknowledgement motivates me to keep working because there is still a significant amount of work to be done in order to achieve climate justice for the world's most vulnerable countries."

Okereke is one of the 47 Fellows that the Academy has chosen.

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