Programme for Applied Environmental Impact Assessment, AIEA; Department of Social and Economic Geography, Uppsala University:

Postal address: Box 513, SE-751 20 Uppsala
Visiting address: Ekonomikum, Kyrkogårdsgatan 10
Fax: +46 (0)18 471 27 37
Web page: http://www.env-impact.geo.uu.se/
Contact person: Professor Lennart Strömquist, phone +46 (0)18 471 25 10

The Programme for Applied Environmental Impact Assessment (AEIA) was established in 1989. The reason was a government decision of the time to increase the support to aid related environmental research. During the first five years, the government directly funded AEIA, through Sida/Sarec. AEIA was, because of a government policy change transferred to Uppsala University in 1994. Field work is frequently done in Sri Lanka (photo from Negombo lagoon below). In August 2003 the programme was transferred from the Dept. of Earth Sciences to the Dept. of Social and Economic Geography.
More information on the Programme for Applied Environmental Impact Assessment

Negombo lagoonResearch and research co-operation

Applied Environmental Impact Assessment is not only a subject related to the Faculty of Science or to the subjects of the host department (Department of Earth Sciences) but to a far higher degree a networking activity involving social, cultural and biological sciences at different universities, including The Programme for Environment, Policy, and Society (EPOS) at Linköping University, the Dept. of Human and Social Geography, the Swedish Bio-diversity centre; and the Dept. of Archaeology at Uppsala University.
Co-operation with foreign universities has been established with the National University of Lesotho, the Eduardo Mondlane University in Mozambique, the University of Transkei in South Africa, and the Institute of Resource Assessment (IRA) at Dar es Salaam University, in Tanzania.
The programme is represented in the Working Group for Tropical Ecology at Uppsala University (ATE) which is administrating Sida sponsored scholarships for field studies in developing countries (Minor Field Studies, MFS). Biology and Earth Sciences students from all Swedish universities are invited to apply.

Undergraduate education

Undergraduate courses in applied environmental impact assessment are given each academic year. Students are drawn not only from Earth Sciences but also to a large degree from other environmental and development related disciplines in Uppsala or at other Swedish universities.

Research connected to South Asia

Professor Lennart Strömquist has been in charge of a research project called ”Environmental management and monitoring from multidisciplinary perspectives as illustrated by the Negombo lagoon in Sri Lanka”, involving several researchers at the department – including Fredrik Haag and Stefan Haglund.
In August 2002 the project was given SEK 65 000 as a planning grant from SASNET. The project is carried out in collaboration with the Dept of Social and Economic Geography, Uppsala University; the Dept. of Geography at Sri Jayewardenapura University, Colombo, Sri Lanka (represented by the professors M M Karunanayake, M D C Abhayratne, and D Wanasinghe); and the National Aquatic Resources, Research & Development Agency, NARA, Colombo, Sri Lanka (represented by Dr Champa Amarasiri). Three PhD candidates from Sri Lanka are also involved in the project; Ajith Gunaratne, G.M. Bandaranayake, and H.M. Jayani Rupi Herath (more information below).
The planning of the project was made in 2003, and included visits by the Swedish participants to Sri Lanka and joint studies with representatives from NARA and Sri Jayewardenapura University. In November 2003 a workshop was arranged in Colombo at the Dept. of Geography, Sri Jayewardenapura University. Read the complete report from the Negombo lagoon research project (as a pdf-file).

In August 2006, Prof. Strömquist received SEK 78 000 as a SASNET planning grant for organising an interdisciplinary workshop on ”Participatory GIS; a tool for planning of rehabilitation of communities affected by natural disasters." See the full list of SASNET planning grants 2006.
The field-based workshop was organised in the Rekawa lagoon in Hambantota district, Sri Lanka, an area heavily affected by the tsunami in 2004. The workshop was supposed to take place in November 2006, but due to the political situation in Sri Lanka it was postponed till February 2007. However, due to the changes in time some participants, including Prof. Strömquist himself, could not take part. The Swedish participants in the workshop were instead Dr. Claes Lindberg, and PhD candidate Daniel Bergquist from the Dept. of Social and Cultural Geography, Uppsala University, and Dr. Louise Simonsson from the Centre for Climate Science and Policy Research, Linköping University at Campus Norrköping. The remaining participanst were researchers and students from NARA and Sri Jayewardenapura University.

Ajith Gunaratne (photo to the left) is a MSc from the University of Colombo but presently a PhD student at the department. His PhD project deals with ”Coastal Zone Management in Sri Lanka, The need for integrated approaches to data generation, information sharing and definition of critical areas” , under the supervision of Prof Lennart Strömquist and Prof. Lars Håkansson, Sedimentology. A project funded by Sida/SAREC, and part of the Marine Science programme. More information on the project.
Based at the GIS Unit, at the National Aquatic Resources Research & Development Agency (NARA) in Colombo, efforts have been done to explore GIS and Remote Sensing strategies for coastal zone planning and monitoring in Sri Lanka. Negombo Lagoon and the associated coastal zone has been selected as a pilot area for the study. The information gathered will be used to compare with the past data in the temporal dimension, and trends on future of the area are to be modeled with the help of identified relationships, manmade interventions etc. See Ajit Gunaratne’s personal web page

G.M. Bandaranayake from the Department of Geography, University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Sri Lanka, has been working on a PhD project on ”Tank Cascading System of Sri Lanka”. More information on the project

H.M. Jayani Rupi Herath, from the same Department of Geography, University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Sri Lanka, has been working on a PhD project on ”Landslide Risk Assessment of Kothmale Oya River Catchment Area”. More information on the project.

International workshop On Fisheries and Aquatic Research

Members of the Applied Environmental Impact Assessment Programme participated in an International workshop on Fisheries and Aquatic Research held at The National Aquatic Resources Research and Development Agency (NARA) in Sri Lanka 29–31 March 2005. PhD candidates Ajith Gunaratne and Daniel Bergquist contributed to the conference with a paper on ”Remote Sensing, GIS and Coastal zone planning” and a poster on ”Coastal shrimp aqua-culture on Sri Lanka” respectively. Professor Lennart Strömquist chaired a session on tsunami impacts and coastal hazards.

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SASNET - Swedish South Asian Studies Network/Lund University
Address: Scheelevägen 15 D, SE-223 70 Lund, Sweden
Phone: +46 46 222 73 40
Webmaster: Lars Eklund
Last updated 2010-06-24