Tuesday, 3 November 2020 (15:00 – 17:00 CET)
Wednesday, 4 November 2020 (15:00 – 17:00 CET)

Characterizing and assessing droughts and drought risk at global and national scales

This event has ended


Understanding and reducing drought risk are key priorities in (inter-)national policy documents and agendas, and the need for improved knowledge and information on drivers, hotspots and dynamics of drought risk and on knowledge-based solutions for strengthening resilience has been repeatedly stressed by scientists, practitioners and policy makers. Responding to these needs the GlobeDrought project, a 42-months project (08/2017–12/2020) funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), aims to characterize meteorological, hydrological and agricultural drought events and associated risks comprehensively. It investigates how droughts impact water resources/supply, crop productivity and agricultural systems. Results are presented in a web-based drought information system. The project combines global-scale analyses with detailed analyses for selected case study regions heavily affected by droughts, including South Africa and Zimbabwe. Further information is provided on the project website.


The goals of the virtual workshop are

  1. to take stock of pressing policy needs related to droughts as well as of approaches available to characterize, monitor and forecast drought events and associated risks, and to develop policy recommendations,
  2. to create a common understanding of current knowledge, working being done in the GlobeDrought project (and beyond), and gaps that need to be addressed, and
  3. develop recommendations for science, practice and policy.


The workshop is split over two consecutive days with distinct foci:

  • Day 1 (03 November 2020): Drought & Drought Risk at the Global Scale
  • Day 2 (04 November 2020): Drought & Drought Risk in South Africa


The workshop will be held in virtual format using the Zoom platform. We aim at a highly participatory format that integrates two short keynote presentations with interactive discussion formats.

Keynote speakers:

  • Day 1 – Dr. Jürgen Vogt, European Commission, Joint Research Centre (JRC), Global Drought Observatory (GDO), Italy. “Assessing drought risk at the global scale: relevance, approach & challenges”
  • Day 2 – Prof. Andries Jordaan, Research Fellow: Disaster Management Training and Education Centre for Africa (DiMTEC), University of the Free State, South Africa. “Drought: disaster or not? Lessons from South Africa”

Expected Outcomes

The outcome of the workshop will be a policy brief that integrates key results and findings from the GlobeDrought project and the inputs, group discussions, and post-workshop engagement of participants. Further, the workshop might also open up opportunities for joint publications in the Natural Hazards and Earth Systems Sciences (NHESS) special issue “Drought vulnerability, risk, and impact assessments: bridging the science-policy gap” which is co-organized by GlobeDrought researchers.

We look forward to your participation!