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West African Science Service Center on Climate and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL)

Title: West African Science Service Center on Climate and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL)

The West African Science Service Center on Climate and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL) is an initiative supported by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) to establish a regional science service center in West Africa on climate change and adapted land use. WASCAL aims at generating knowledge and developing analytical capabilities in the region to cope climate change by the design of resilient land-use systems and the development of measures to conserve or restore healthy ecosystems that allow sustainable development. WASCAL will lie on the cooperation between the West African research community and the expertise existing in Germany on climate change and adapted land manage¬ment. This partnership should strengthen the ability in the region to assess the impact of land management policies affecting the well-being of the target region.

WASCAL involves three major tasks: a) the establishment of a Competence Center in Ouagadougou, as a consultative instance in climate and adapted land-use change related issues for the national and regional institutions; b) the construction of a Core Research Program based on a German-West African consortium, in charge of design and conduct ad-hoc research in the mentioned themes, and provision of inputs to the Competence Center; and c) the foundation and sponsoring of Capacity Building Nodes, responsible of high-level and multidisciplinary education and research (graduate school) focused on the targeted issues and in cooperation with the local universities.

The Center for Development Research (ZEF) is coordinating the establishment of WASCAL and the Core Resarch Program. The Crop Science Group shares the responsibility to prepare the Core Research Program.

Person in charge:

Prof. Dr. Frank Ewert,
Dr. Thomas Gaiser,
Dr. Heidi Webber

Runtime: 2010 - 2017

Funding: Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung (BMBF)

Cooperating partner: University of Bonn, ZEF, INRES, ILR, Insitute of Geography
University of Augsburg, Institute of Geography
University of Würzburg, Bio Centre, Department of Geography
DLR Oberpfaffenhofen
FZ Jülich, project homepage:

Official Press Release (German)


Teixeira, E.I., G. Zhao, J.d. Ruiter, H. Brown, A.-G. Ausseil, E. Meenken, F. Ewert, in press. The interactions between genotype, management and environment in regional crop modelling. European Journal of Agronomy. DOI:10.1016/j.eja.2016.05.005.

Webber, H., P. Martre, S. Asseng, B. Kimball, J. White, M. Ottman, G.W. Wall., G. De Sanctis, J. Doltra, R. Grant, B. Kassie, A. Maiorano, J.E. Olesen, D. Ripoche, E. Eyshi Rezaei, M.A. Semenov, P. Stratonovitch, F. Ewert, 2017. Canopy temperature for simulation of heat stress in irrigated wheat in a semi-arid environment: A multi-model comparison. Field Crops Research 202, 21-35. DOI:10.1016/j.fcr.2015.10.009.

Faye, B., H. Webber, T. Gaiser, M. Diop, J.D. Owusu-Sekyere, J.B. Naab, 2016. Effects of fertilization rate and water availability on peanut growth and yield in Senegal (West Africa). Journal of Sustainable Development 9, 111-131. DOI:10.5539/jsd.v9n6p111.

Gabaldón-Leal, C., H. Webber, M.E. Otegui, G.A. Slafer, R.A. Ordóñez, T. Gaiser, I.J. Lorite, M. Ruiz-Ramos, F. Ewert, 2016. Modelling the impact of heat stress on maize yield formation. Field Crops Research 198, 226-237. DOI:10.1016/j.fcr.2016.08.013.

Webber, H., F. Ewert, B.A. Kimball, S. Siebert, J.W. White, G.W. Wall, M.J. Ottman, D.N.A. Trawally, T. Gaiser, 2016. Simulating canopy temperature for modelling heat stress in cereals. Environmental Modelling & Software 77, 143-155. DOI:10.1016/j.envsoft.2015.12.003

Webber, H., T. Gaiser, R. Oomen, E. Teixeira, G. Zhao, D. Wallach, A. Zimmermann, F. Ewert, 2016. Uncertainty in future irrigation water demand and risk of crop failure for maize in Europe. Environmental Research Letters 11, 074007. DOI:10.1088/1748-9326/11/7/074007.

Zhao, G., H. Hoffmann, J. Yeluripati, S. Xenia, C. Nendel, E. Coucheney, M. Kuhnert, F. Tao, J. Constantin, H. Raynal, E. Teixeira, B. Grosz, L. Doro, R. Kiese, H. Eckersten, E. Haas, D. Cammarano, B. Kassie, M. Moriondo, G. Trombi, M. Bindi, C. Biernath, F. Heinlein, C. Klein, E. Priesack, E. Lewan, K.-C. Kersebaum, R. Rötter, P.P. Roggero, D. Wallach, S. Asseng, S. Siebert, T. Gaiser, F. Ewert, 2016. Evaluating the precision of eight spatial sampling schemes in estimating regional means of simulated yield for two crops. Environmental Modelling & Software 80, 100-112. DOI:10.1016/j.envsoft.2016.02.022.

Ewert, F., R.P. Rötter, M. Bindi, H. Webber, M. Trnka, K.C. Kersebaum, J.E. Olesen, M.K. van Ittersum, S. Janssen, M. Rivington, M.A. Semenov, D. Wallach, J.R. Porter, D. Stewart, J. Verhagen, T. Gaiser, T. Palosuo, F. Tao, C. Nendel, P.P. Roggero, L. Bartošová, S. Asseng, 2015. Crop modelling for integrated assessment of risk to food production from climate change. Environmental Modelling & Software 72, 287-303. DOI:10.1016/j.envsoft.2014.12.003.

Eyshi Rezaei, E., H. Webber, T. Gaiser, J. Naab, F. Ewert, 2015. Heat stress in cereals: mechanisms and modeling. European Journal of Agronomy 64, 98-113. DOI:10.1016/j.eja.2014.10.003.

Webber, H., G. Zhao, J. Wolf, W. Britz, W. de Vries, T. Gaiser, H. Hoffmann, F. Ewert, 2015. Climate change impacts on European crop yields: do we need to consider nitrogen limitation? European Journal of Agronomy 71, 123–134. DOI:10.1016/j.eja.2015.09.002.

Kahiluoto,H., R. Rötter, H. Webber, F. Ewert, 2014. The role of modelling in adapting and building the climate resilience of cropping systems. In: Fuhrer, J.,Gregory, P. (eds.) Climate Change Impact and Adaptation in Agricultural Systems. CABI. CAB International, 204-215.

Webber, H., H. Kahiluoto, R. Rötter, F. Ewert, 2014. Enhancing Climate Resilience of Cropping Systems. In: Fuhrer, J., Gregory, P. (eds.) Climate Change Impact and Adaptation in Agricultural Systems. CABI. CAB International, 167-179.

Eyshi Rezaei, E., T. Gaiser, S. Siebert, B. Sultan, F. Ewert, 2014. Combined impacts of climate and nutrient fertilisation on yields of pearl millet in Niger. European Journal of Agronomy 55, 77-88. DOI:10.1016/j.eja.2014.02.001.

Folberth, C., H. Yang, T. Gaiser, J. Liu, X. Wang, J. Williams, R. Schulin, 2014. Effects of ecological and conventional agricultural intensification practices on maize yields in sub-Saharan Africa under potential climate change. Environmental Research Letters 9, 044004. DOI:10.1088/1748-9326/9/4/044004.

Ruppert, J.C., A. Linstädter, 2014. Convergence between ANPP estimation methods in grasslands - a practical solution to the comparability dilemma. Ecological Indicators 36, 524-531. DOI:10.1016/j.ecolind.2013.09.008.

Webber, H., T. Gaiser, F. Ewert, 2014. What role can crop models play in supporting climate change adaptation decisions to enhance food security in Sub-Saharan Africa? Agricultural Systems, 127, 161-177. DOI:10.1016/j.agsy.2013.12.006.

Callo-Concha, D.,  T. Gaiser, H. Webber,  B. Tischbein,  M.Müller, M., F. Ewert, 2013. Farming in the West African Sudan Savanna: Insights in the context of climate change. African Journal of Agricultural Research 8, 4693 – 4705. DOI:10.5897/AJAR2013.7153

Dagbenonbakin, G., A. Srivastava, T. Gaiser, H. Goldbach, 2013. Maize nutrient assessment in Benin Republic: Case of Upper Ouémé Catchment. Journal of Plant Nutrition 36 (4), 587-606. DOI:10.1080/01904167.2012.754031.

Folbert, C., H. Yang, T. Gaiser, K.C. Abaspour, R. Schulin, 2013. Modelling maize yield responses to improvement in nutrient, water and cultivar inputs in sub-Saharan Africa. Agric. Systems 119, 22-34. DOI:10.1016/j.agsy.2013.04.002.

Worou, O.N., T. Gaiser, S. Kazuki, H. Goldbach, F. Ewert, 2013. Spatio-temporal dynamics of constraints on rainfed rice yield and growth in West African inland valleys. Agricultural Water Management 126, 119-124. DOI:10.1016/j.agwat.2013.04.007.

Bossa, A.Y., B. Diekkrüger, A.M. Igué, T. Gaiser, 2012 . Analyzing the effects of different soil databases on modeling of hydrological processes and sediment yield in Benin (West Africa). Geoderma 174, 61-74. DOI:10.1016/j.geoderma.2012.01.012.

Dagbenonbakin, G., A. Srivastava, T. Gaiser, H. Goldbach, 2012. Diagnosis and Recommendation Integrated system: A tool for detecting nutrient deficiencies in Yam (Dioscorea rotundata).  Journal of Plant Nutrition, 35 (14), 2124-2134. DOI:10.1080/01904167.2012.724492.

Folbert, C., T. Gaiser, K.C. Abbaspour, R. Schulin, H. Yang, 2012. Regionalization of a large-scale crop growth model for sub-Saharan Africa: model setup, evaluation, and estimation of maize yields. Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment 151, 21-33. DOI:10.1016/j.agee.2012.01.026.

Gaiser, T., K. Stahr, M. Bernard, B.T. Kang, 2012. Changes in soil organic matter fractions in a tropical acrisol as influenced by contrasting organic materials. Agroforestry Systems 86, 185-195. DOI:10.1007/s10457-011-9417-0.

Igué, A.M., C.J. Houndagba, T. Gaiser, K. Stahr, 2012. Accuracy of the Land Use/Cover classification in the Queme Basin of Benin (West Africa). International Journal of AgriScience 2,  174-184. Zum Artikel.

Srivastava, A., T. Gaiser ,  D. Cornet,  F. Ewert, 2012. Estimation of effective fallow availability for the prediction of yam productivity at the regional scale using model-based multiple scenario analysis. Field Crops Research 131, 32-39. DOI:10.1016/j.fcr.2012.01.012.

Srivastava, A.K.,  T. Gaiser,  H. Paeth, F. Ewert, F., 2012. The impact of climate change on Yam (Dioscorea alata) yield in the savanna zone of West Africa. Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment 153, 57-64. DOI:10.1016/j.agee.2012.03.004.

Worou, O.N., T. Gaiser, K. Saito, H. Goldbach, F. Ewert, 2012. Simulation of soil water dynamics and rice crop growth as affected by bunding and fertilizer  application in inland valley systems of  West Africa. Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment 162, 24-35. DOI:10.1016/j.agee.2012.07.018.

Gaiser, T., M. Judex, A.M. Igué, H. Paeth, H. Hiepe, 2011. Future productivity of fallow systems in Sub-Saharan Africa: Is the effect of demographic pressure and fallow reduction more significant than climate change? Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 151, 1120-1130. DOI:10.1016/j.agrformet.2011.03.015.

Hounsou, M., B. Ahamidé, K.E. Agbossou, T. Gaiser, 2011. Evaluation of water quality in the Ouémé river (Bénin). The Environmentalist 31, 407-415. DOI : 10.1007/s10669-011-9356-3.

Gaiser, T.,  I. De Barros, F. Sereke, F.-M. Lange, 2010.  Validation and reliability of the EPIC model to simulate maize production in smallholder farming systems in tropical sub-humid West Africa and semi-arid Brazil. Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment 135, 318-327. DOI:10.1016/j.agee.2009.10.014.

Gaiser, T., C. Hiepe, M. Judex, A. Kuhn, 2010. Regional simulation of maize production in tropical savanna fallow systems as affected by fallow availability. Agricultural Systems 103, 656-665. DOI:10.1016/j.agsy.2010.08.004.

Kuhn, A., T. Gaiser, E. Gandonou, 2010. Simulating the Effects of  Tax Exemptions on Fertiliser Use in Benin by linking Biophysical and Economic Models. Agricultural Systems 103, 509-520. DOI:10.1016/j.agsy.2010.05.003.

Srivastava, A.K., T. Gaiser, 2010. Simulating biomass accumulation and yield of yam (Dioscorea alata) in the Upper Quémé Basin (Benin Republic)- I. Compilation of physiological parameters and calibration at the field scale. Field Crops Research 116, 23-29. DOI:10.1016/j.fcr.2009.10.018.

Srivastava, A., G. Dagbenonbakin, T. Gaiser, 2010. Effect of fertilization on Yam (Dioscorea rotundata) biomass production. Journal of Plant Nutrition 33, 1056-1065. DOI:10.1080/01904161003729766.

Gaiser, T., C. Folbert, 2013. Soil carbon sequestration and degradation in space and time. International Conference of IUSS, Sept 30 to Oct 5, Ulm, Germany.

Abdel-Razek, M., T. Gaiser, B. Diekkrüger, H. Goldbach, 2011.  Mitigation of Global Climate Change and Water Scarcity Impacts on Agriculture in Draa Oases, South East Morocco: Methodological Framework. Proceedings of the International Conference “Development on the margin”,  Bonn, Germany, October 2011.

Gaiser, T., M.Judex, A.M. Igue, H. Hiepe, 2011.  Impact of Reduced Fallow Availability on crop yields in low input cropping systems in West Africa,  “Development on the margin”. Tropentag,  International Conference Bonn, Germany, October 2011Poster

Worou, N., T. Gaiser, H. Goldbach, 2011.  Lowland Rice Growth and Productivity as Related to Landscape Position, Bunding and Fertiliser Application. Proceedings of the International Conference “Development on the margin”, October 2011, Bonn, Germany.