PD1.1 A Hybrid Backward-Forward Iterative Model for Improving Capacity Building of Earth Observations for Sustainable Societal Application in Developing Countries (Invited Presentation)

Monday, 11 January 2016: 12:00 AM
Room 252/254 ( New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center)
Faisal Hossain, University of Washington, Seattle, WA; and N. Iqbal and H. Lee
Manuscript (76.0 kB)

When it comes to building durable capacity for implementing state of the art technology and earth observation (EO) data for improved decision making, it has been long recognized that a unidirectional approach (from research to application or from supply to demand) often does not work. Co-production or Co-design of capacity building effort has recently been recommended as a better alternative to maximize success of any capacity building effort. This co-production is a two-way street where scientists and stakeholders engage intimately along the entire chain of actions from design of research experiments to packaging of decision making tools and each party provides an equal amount of input. Scientists execute research experiments based on boundary conditions and outputs that are defined as tangible by stakeholders for decision making. On the other hand, decision making tools are packaged by stakeholders with scientists ensuring the application-specific science is relevant. In this talk, we will overview one such iterative capacity building approach that we have implemented for gravimetry-based satellite (GRACE) EO data for improved groundwater management in Pakistan. We call our approach a hybrid approach where the initial step is a forward model involving a typical short-term (3 day) capacity building workshop in the stakeholder environment addressing a very large audience. In this forward model, the net is cast wide to ‘shortlist' a set of highly motivated stakeholder agency staffs who are then engaged more directly in 1-1 training. In the next step (the backward model), these short listed staffs are then brought back in the research environment of the scientists (supply) for 1-1 and long-term (6 months) intense brainstorming, training, and design of decision making tools. The advantage of this backward model is that it allows for a much better understanding for scientists of the ground conditions and hurdles of making a EO-based scientific innovation work for a specific decision making problem that is otherwise fundamentally impossible in a 3 day conventional workshop or via distance communication. We demonstrate here our experience of implementing this hybrid model for capacity building for groundwater management at 30 to 180 day timescales for Pakistan Council for Research on Water Resources (PCRWR) with the ultimate goal of empowerment to make agencies independent in their ability to monitor groundwater storage changes from satellites.

Supplementary URL: www.saswe.net

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