The Urban Africa: Risk Knowledge (Urban ARK) Programme continues to have significant policy impact two years after the official project completion.
Notably, three recent policy documents from Oyo State/Ibadan City, Nigeria government make specific reference to Urban ARK executed in Ibadan as indicated in the glossary of terminology and the main body of the reports.
The documents are the following:
1.Strategic Environmental and Social Assessment (SESA) of Ibadan City Masterplan, Oyo State, Nigeria. May 2018. (page 178)
2.Integrated Flood Risk Management and Drainage Masterplan for Ibadan City (Hydrologic Analysis Report). August 2018. (See pages V, 14, 15).
3.Integrated Flood Risk Management and Drainage Masterplan for Ibadan City. Vol. 1 Main report, July 2019. (see page 1).
The documents are outputs of the Oyo state government initiative to develop a plan to manage flood risk in the city of Ibadan following the city wide flood disaster in 2011.
The Urban ARK research team in Ibadan have engaged with city officials in several participatory stakeholder meetings and other meetings during critical times of developing disaster related reports and city planning.
The Urban ARK research team in Ibadan developed strong partnerships with relevant agencies and ministries in the city through bringing on board /involvement of key city agencies in Urban ARK project activities all through the project cycle beginning in 2015. Senior city officials in the agencies that constituted the Project Implementation Unit of the Ibadan Urban Flood Management Project (IUFMP) including the Bureau of Physical Planning and Development Control (BPPDC), Oyo State Emergency Management Agency (OYSEMA) and ministry of environment and water resources, among others, participated in all Urban ARK project activities including the inception meeting, working group meeting, disaster risk reduction stakeholder platforms, Urban ARK international stakeholder meeting (2017), capacity building workshops and final project dissemination meeting. These meetings provided opportunities for knowledge exchange between Urban ARK researchers and city officials. The interaction of city officials with the Urban ARK project contributed to increasing their knowledge on urban risks in the city, in this case flood risk, such that they were able to bring this knowledge to the table during planning and deliberations at their high level meetings and recognition of Urban ARK in the reports.
A further example is the invited presentation given by city project lead Professor Ibidun Adelekan at the Ibadan Urban Flood Management Project (IUFMP) 1st Stakeholders’ Engagement Workshop (22 March, 2016). Some of the knowledge shared in the presentation was from the Urban ARK Ibadan City Diagnostic Report. Reportedly, this was picked up and included in the Integrated Flood Risk Management and Drainage Masterplan for Ibadan City (Hydrologic Analysis Report). In addition, other Urban ARK literature was sourced and included.
Flooding is a major risk for Ibadan city. The successful implementation of the Flood Risk Management and Drainage Masterplan will achieve two objectives of relevance to the Urban ARK mission for reducing risk for the urban poor. These are: (i) reduce flooding in the city and mitigate flood impact including the associated damages and losses and (ii) reduce flood risk of the urban poor and enhance their social and economic well-being.
This is especially important considering increasing flood events in the city as a consequence of changes in rainfall patterns, city growth and urban development patterns.