Iphakade – a new beginning in 2015

Iphakade – a new beginning in 2015

Two collaborative bilateral Earth System Programs – Inkaba yeAfrica (www.inkaba.org) and !Khure Africa (www.iKhure.org) – have been active for 10 and 5 years respectively, with Germany and France.  The programmes have been generously supported by DST (Department of Science and Technology)  and NRF (National Research Foundation), but the bilateral nature of these programmes has come to an end. It is therefore timely to move on, and establish a South African Programme that can stand on its own.  Building on the success of these two earth systems science programmes, we have combined their goals and ongoing research and capacity building aims into one unified program with earth stewardship science as its main objective, and which we have called – Iphakade – an isiKhosa word meaning: ‘observe the present and consider the past to ponder the future’.

Iphakade is an AEON (Africa Earth Observatory Network) flagship programme that is trans-disciplinary, focussing on new integrated developments and consilient knowledge amongst earth and life sciences, engineering, resource economics and the human sciences, Earth Stewardship Science (ESS) is a new discipline that has emerged in response to the need to link Earth System Sciences more explicitly with Society, and form a broadly-based plan of action to deal also with the environmental-socio-political issues of the Anthropocene.

Iphakade will help to forge Earth Stewardship into a science that can sustain the planet and its people. Until end-2016, the program will continue with its DST/NRF funding based on the previous Inkaba yeAfrica and !Khure Africa formulas.  Soon the websites will be integrated into one.

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