Research and Publications

Research & Publications

  • Brazil 2018

    Year: 2018

    Document type: Administration

    Information about the 2018 Immersive Learning Journey to Brazil.

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    5481
  • Ethiopia Journey 2018

    Year: 2018

    Document type: Administration

    Information about the Immersive Learning Journey to Ethiopia

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    5480
  • India Journey 2018

    Year: 2018

    Document type: Administration

    Information about the 2018 Immersive Learning Journey to India.

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    5479
  • The weight of cities: Resource requirements of future urbanization

    Year: 2018

    Document type: SI Research & Publications

    This report looks at the resource implications of projected urbanization, and calls for substantial changes in urban form, governance and design. Coordinated by Mark Swilling and Blake Robinson of the Sustainability Institute, the report features contributions from an international panel of experts, including Josephine Musango and Paul Currie of uMAMA Africa at Stellenbosch University.

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    5496
  • 2017 Year in Review report

    Sustainability Institute

    Year: 2017

    Document type: Administration

    In this report, we are pleased to share with you an overview of the developments and successes achieved in our academic and research programmes in 2017.

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    5499
  • A Case Study of Transdisciplinarity and Biomimicry: The Restoration of Water Systems using Eco-machines within the Informal Berg River Community

    Gabriel Wolfaardt

    Year: 2017

    Document type: Student Research

    In an attempt to restore water systems in the Berg River a TD approach was thus applied in an effort to ensure inclusion of the community as active participants in project design without their involvement becoming the primary focus of the project, but rather a means to achieve the overall goal of contributing to the creation of an environment conducive to human dignity and health. Presented here is a report, in the form of two journal articles, on the progress made in this on-going project, the need to adapt and modify, lessons learned and reflection on future initiatives.

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    5404
  • Broadening the discourse on small-scale generation: an investigation into public opinion of embedded rooftop photovoltaic systems in Stellenbosch

    Geeta Morar

    Year: 2017

    Document type: Student Research

    This paper investigates and critically evaluates the effects of the emergent approach taken towards the uptake of distributed generation (DG) systems in South Africa. The study focuses on a case study conducted in Stellenbosch, Western Cape, on the uptake of small-scale embedded generation photovoltaic (SSEG PV) systems, and compares this with a literature review of strengths and weaknesses of the approaches towards the promotion DG that have emerged elsewhere in the world.

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    5403
    Renewable Energy
  • Creating Synergies between Sustainable Transitions and Assemblage Urbanism

    Warren Manual

    Year: 2017

    Document type: Student Research

    The primary aim of this research project was to contribute to an epistemological settlement within social theory, which is necessary if transdisciplinary research is to lead the transition to sustainability.

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    5400
  • Finding ways to increase access to nutritious food in an urban township through the informal economy

    Aabida Davis

    Year: 2017

    Document type: Student Research

    The main aim of this thesis was to understand the challenges and opportunities of promoting nutritious food through the informal food economy.

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    5401
    Food Systems
  • Impact Report 2017

    Amelia Pretorius

    Year: 2017

    Document type: Administration

    Impact Report focusing on the Trust initiatives of the SI during 2017 - Lynedoch Children's House, SPARK Bursaries and Youth Programme.

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    5482
  • Investigating the Challenges and Benefits of Traditional Medicine: A Case of Tanzania

    Shaun Dunn

    Year: 2017

    Document type: Student Research

    This study was conducted in Tanzania and aimed to understand the challenges to and benefits of traditional medicine in an East African setting.

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    5399
  • The place where poetries meet: Exploring the contribution of the InZync poetry sessions to socio-cultural transformation in Stellenbosch

    Pieter Odendaal

    Year: 2017

    Document type: Student Research

    This study employs a context-specific systems-based understanding of transformation within the orientating framework of complexity theory to explore the contribution of the InZync poetry sessions, regular multilingual performance poetry events held in Kayamandi between 2011 and 2016, to sociocultural transformation in Stellenbosch.

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    5402
    Education & Learning
  • Transit-oriented development (TOD) as a facilitator for urban development integration: Case study: Du Toit train station precinct, Stellenbosch

    Thendo Mafame

    Year: 2017

    Document type: Student Research

    This TDR study explores ways in which South Africa’s spatial divide, entrenched through decades of discriminatory planning policies, can be restructured to bring about equitable access to places of employment, business, leisure and service for previously marginalised South Africans. It does so by exploring the potential of the transit-orientated development (TOD) model to restructure and revitalise urban spaces in a collaborative model. The study focuses, through a case study, on the Du Toit station precinct in the town of Stellenbosch, on the peri-urban edge of the city of Cape Town, South Africa.

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    5405
    Sustainable Cities
  • Understanding Sustainability of Mohair value chain in South Africa

    Josephine Musango, Lize Duminy, Benjamin Batinge

    Year: 2017

    Document type: Faculty Research & Publications

    South Africa is a key player in the global mohair production industry, and contributed 53% of global production in 2016. Given the important role of mohair production, in the IPAP 2016/17 - 2017/18, the Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr Rob Davis, named the Mohair Cluster among the clothing and textile sectors that would be promoted to enhance its competitiveness.

    To support the renewed interest for demand-driven interventions, increased mohair production, and the promotion of overall competitiveness, this report presents a Mohair Primary Production Echelon Model (MoPPEM). The model was developed using the System Dynamics approach, to identify, visualize and quantify the major components of the mohair production value chain, including an assessment of their interrelations, as described by industry stakeholders.

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    5476
    Resource Efficiencies
  • A critical assessment of key datasets and approaches with which to determine the resource requirements of future urbanisation

    Jay du Plessis

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    Nobody is asking, “what are the resource requirements of future urbanisation?” So, the original goal of this study was to try and find an answer to this vital question. However, in order to assess the resource requirements of global urbanisation to 2050, three key sets of figures would have to be accepted, namely: estimates and projections of urbanisation, population and urban resource consumption. And, in the analysis of the literature surrounding these data themes, fundamental problems were uncovered. So, the focus of the study was then shifted from trying to assess the resource requirements of future urbanisation, to critically analysing the way in which to do so.

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    5413
    Resource Efficiencies
  • Accessing South African food system value-chains: Constraints faced by smallholder farmers and conservation agriculture

    Wolfgang von Loeper

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    The following study looks at the potential of scaling productive practices on sustainable farming systems, such as conservation agriculture (CA) and smallholder farmers (SHFs), for food security in South Africa remains under-investigated. Support for a greener, lower carbon economy that creates jobs and improves human well-being as part of inclusive sustainable development could be driven, in part, by two separate long-term sustainable principles, conservation agriculture and smallholder farmers.

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    5406
    Food Systems
  • Africa’s game changers and the catalysts of social and system innovation

    Prof. Mark Swilling

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Faculty Research & Publications

    Swilling, M. 2016. Africa’s game changers and the catalysts of social and system innovation. Ecology and Society 21(1):37.

    Abstract: It is widely recognized that many African economies are being transformed by rapid economic growth driven largely by rising demand for the abundant natural resources scattered across the African continent. I critically review the mainstream game changing dynamics driving this process, with special reference to a set of influential policy-oriented documents. This is followed by an analysis of less-recognized game-changing dynamics that have, in turn, been affected by the mainstream game-changing dynamics.

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    5200
    Sustainable Cities
  • Agro-ecological and Conservation Agriculture principles to assist large-scale dryland sugarcane farmers in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands South region to improve soil quality

    William Adriaan Gibson

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    The aim of this research was to ascertain if Agro-ecological and Conservation Agriculture principles could assist large-scale dryland sugarcane farmers to improve soil quality.

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  • An investigation into the financial impact of residential Rooftop PV on Stellenbosch Municipality

    Nikkie Korsten

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    This research investigates the financial impact that increasing installations of grid-connected rooftop PV at a household level might have on local governments, using Stellenbosch Municipality as a case study. 

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    5410
  • Assessment of the City of Cape Town’s Energy Efficiency programmes within its internal operations

    Sumaya Mahomed

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    This study focuses on assessing the City of Cape Town’s energy efficiency programmes within its own operations, with specific focus on understanding the outcomes that have been achieved. This study develops a business model to aid in continuation of energy efficiency programmes within the City of Cape Town, beyond the guaranteed funding period of 2017. 

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    5408
    Resource Efficiencies
  • Benefits and limitations of the informal economy in promoting a sustainable and inclusive local economic development - A Stellenbosch case study.

    Lelethu Tshofuti

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    This study therefore sets out to: (i) investigate the benefits and limitations of the informal economy in promoting sustainable and inclusive local economic development; (ii) assess Stellenbosch Municipality’s approach to the informal economy and the impact this approach has on livelihoods and local economic development and; (iii) review a number of comparative cases to find best practices.

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    5416
    Development Planning
  • Energy infrastructure transition in urban informal households in South Africa

    Ebenaezer Appies

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    The study aims to enhance our understanding of the transformation of the energy infrastructure that urban informal households use for various energy services.

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    5407
  • Exploring Design towards a Sustainable City:through the lens of Cape Town as World Design Capital 2014

    Marjorie Naidoo

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    This study is an exploration of the relationship between advancing technological revolutions and socio‐metabolic transitions, evolving global design movements, sustainability, and cities, through the lens of Cape Town as World Design Capital (WDC) 2014, making use of a case study methodology.

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    5420
    Sustainable Cities
  • Food security and the urban informal economy in South Africa: the state of knowledge and perspectives from street-food traders in Khayelitsha

    Etai Even-Zatav

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    By systematically reviewing the contemporary literature (2009-2014), this research maps out the present state of knowledge about the informal food economy and its contribution to food (in)security. 

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    5425
    Food Systems
  • Incorporating an earth jurisprudence approach into South African environmental law for the protection of endangered species: Options and challenges.

    Carla van Rooyen

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    This study explores the anthropocentric basis of the South African legal system and the resulting failure of our legal system to protect the environment.

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    5423
    Leadership & Facilitation
  • Informing Responsible Investment Practices through Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Analysis: A Perspective from South African Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) and Transformation Disclosure

    Delene Taute

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    This research aims to provide greater insight into responsible investment (RI) practices in South Africa and abroad. Specifically, the research aims to contribute to the fields of sustainability and RI, explore best practices and frameworks informing RI practices, to highlight the obstacles to RI in South Africa, to explore the disclosure of a purposefully selected sample of Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) listed companies, and to improve the disclosure of listed companies in South Africa in order to inform the process of environmental, social and governance (ESG) inclusion in investment decision-making

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    5421
    Leadership & Facilitation
  • Intermediaries and learning in sustainability-oriented urban transitions: a transdisciplinary case study from Stellenbosch Municipality

    Megan Davies

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    This thesis explores the role of intermediaries and learning in sustainability transitions at the urban scale and deploys a particular transitions perspective in a transdisciplinary case study of the Rector-Executive Mayor Forum in Stellenbosch, a major town in Stellenbosch Municipality in the Western Cape Province of South Africa.

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    5398
  • Methods of engagement: a transdisciplinary learning approach (in words and pictures) to the problem of the Eerste River

    Gwen Meyer

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    The concern of this study is with the persistent crisis of the Eerste River in Stellenbosch and its relevance in the Anthropocene. In this study, the river is both a lens onto uneven urban development and an instrument for sustainability as a social movement.

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    5424
  • Multi-Scale Governance of Sustainable Natural Resource Use

    Stefan Bringezu, Janez Potocnik, Heinz Schandl, Yonglong Lu, Anu Ramaswami, Mark Swilling, Sangwon Suh

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Faculty Research & Publications

    Multi-Scale Governance of Sustainable Natural Resource Use - Challenges and Opportunities for Monitoring and Institutional Development at the National and Global Level. Published in inSustainability 8(8):778, August 2016. 

    In a globalized economy, the use of natural resources is determined by the demand of modern production and consumption systems, and by infrastructure development. Sustainable natural resource use will require good governance and management based on sound scientific information, data and indicators. There is a rich literature on natural resource management, yet the national and global scale and macro-economic policy making has been underrepresented. We provide an overview of the scholarly literature on multi-scale governance of natural resources, focusing on the information required by relevant actors from local to global scale.

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    5201
    Resource Efficiencies
  • Opportunities for integrating Sustainable urban Drainage Systems (SuDS) in informal settlements as part of stormwater management

    Cathy Malulu

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    The need to find and implement alternative drainage solutions is paramount. This study seeks to motivate for such an alternative approach and to explore the options available.  

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    5422
  • Small holder farmers and organic agriculture in South Africa

    Candice Kelly and Luke Metelerkamp

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Faculty Research & Publications

    This paper is a systematic review of published literature on organic agriculture in South Africa. It represents the first step of a Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammen arbeit (GIZ) funded project led by the Southern African Food Lab (SAFL), under the auspices of Stellenbosch University, on the future of smallholder organic agriculture in South Africa.

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    3987
  • Sustainable mining communities post mine closure: Critical reflection on roles and responsibilities of stakeholders towards local economic development in the City of Matlosana

    Kobus van Heerden

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    This study explores the role that mining companies and other role-players should play in the development of local economies in order to reduce the negative social impacts of future closures.

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    5412
    Development Planning
  • The Dynamics Influencing Progress Towards Responsible Investment: A Process Study of the Agency of the Code for Responsible Investment in South Africa (CRISA)

    Cecile Feront

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    The objective of the research is to gain an understanding of the dynamics at play within the investment industry and to assess the agency of the Code for Responsible Investment in South Africa (CRISA) to promote progress towards responsible investment in South Africa.

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    5411
    Leadership & Facilitation
  • The green economy within an emerging new cosmology perspective: rethinking sustainability

    Michelle Maynard

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    This research provides a cosmological and discourse analysis of the various different discourses on the green economy. It aims to address the dichotomy of where only the evolving self is seen as living and purposeful within a dead, random mechanistic universe. Furthermore, it aims to provide an alternative vision and discourse on the green economy and sustainability. 

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    5415
  • The South African hemp story: saviour crop or business as usual?

    Camila Coogan

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    This study, presented in the form of two journal articles, seeks to understand the barriers to initiating a viable, inclusive and sustainable hemp industry in South Africa.

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    5418
  • The Sustainability Institute's Cookbook: Recipes for food and community building

    Eduardo Shimahara

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    The Sustainability Institute in Stellenbosch South Africa is an institution dedicated to teach and promote sustainable development through different courses. Postgraduate, Masters and even PhD courses are offered in partnership with Stellenbosch University to students that come from many different countries. This participatory action research (PAR) project aims to investigate the role of food at the Sustainability Institute.

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    5419
    Food Systems
  • Towards a “new moment” in Life Sciences Education:  Facilitating critical complexity thinkers in South African secondary schools.

    Gerard Noel

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    The implications of this research are vast, however mainly suggest that mainstreaming a critical complexity learning experience is possible and that perhaps this may be the start of a transitioning towards a “new moment” in Life Sciences education, which translates not only into ESD, but also a complexity ethic – creating mindful teachers and learners who engage and participate in the world sustainably.

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    5417
    Education & Learning
  • Typology of representative building designs within townships for energy efficiency in the City of Cape Town

    Reshmi Muringathuparambil

    Year: 2016

    Document type: Student Research

    Typology of representative building designs within townships for energy efficiency in the City of Cape Town.

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    5409
  • "God has Locked the Sky": Exploring Traditional Farming Systems in Tigray, Ethiopia.

    Nava Derakhshani

    Year: 2015

    Document type: Student Research

    This study sought to explore the environmental degradation of Tigray through both a literature review of its agricultural socio-political history and a lived experience in the village of Abraha We Atsebaha among farmers of the region. It uses a variety of methodologies and methods, including a literature review, grounded theory, narrative inquiry and ethnography, to expand on the factors that have contributed to the current degradation, the implications for traditional farming and the potential for land regeneration.

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    5439
    Food Systems
  • A Resource Flow Typology of African Cities

    Paul Currie

    Year: 2015

    Document type: Student Research

    This study is primarily geared towards establishing a resource consumption typology for African cities. 

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    5428
  • A Study on the sustainable infrastructure of the Songdo City Project: From the Viewpoint of the Metabolic Flow Perspective

    Insoo Baek

    Year: 2015

    Document type: Student Research

    In this study, the thesis applies Material Flow Analysis (MFA) to one of the sustainable cities, Songdo, South Korea. The study goes on to examine the material flow of inputs and outputs of the city in order to reveal their sustainability and suggests a guideline for the realisation of sustainable cities.

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    5440
  • An analysis of the role of impact assessment legislation in facilitating sustainable development: A case study of Tanzania

    Emanuel Alfred

    Year: 2015

    Document type: Student Research

    This study explores the effectiveness of impact assessment and related legislation in contributing towards sustainable development in practice, by looking at the Tanzanian laws and policies on impact assessment that claim to promote sustainable development and measuring them against recommendations from the literature and comparative legislation of other countries.

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    5442
    Development Planning
  • Assessment of the Community Wildlife Management Partnership: a case study of Uganda Wildlife Authority and local communities around Mount Elgon National Park, Uganda

    Hamidah Namatovu

    Year: 2015

    Document type: Student Research

    This study describes how Collaborative Wildlife Management (CWM) was implemented in Ulukusi, a community on the border of Mount Elgon National Park (MENP), eastern Uganda. It assesses livelihood strategies before and after the implementation of CWM.

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    5433
    Development Planning
  • Developmental States and Sustainability Transitions: Prospects of a Just Transition in South Africa

    Swilling, Josephine Musango & Jeremy Wakeford

    Year: 2015

    Document type: Faculty Research & Publications

    To cite this article: Mark Swilling, Josephine Musango & Jeremy Wakeford (2015): Developmental States and Sustainability Transitions: Prospects of a Just Transition in South Africa, Journal of Environmental Policy & Planning

    Since the onset of the global economic crisis in 2007/2008 two key trends have made it necessary to reconceptualize the relationship between development and sustainability: the rapid rise of the so-called ‘BRICS’ and the emergence of the green economy discourse and now since 2015 the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals. To address this challenge with respect to developing economies in the global South, this paper endeavours to fuse the core conceptual concerns of the developmental state and sustainability transition literatures. It is argued that a just transition would consist of a dual commitment to human well-being (with respect to income, education and health) and sustainability (with respect to decarbonization, resource efficiency and ecosystem restoration).

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    5203
  • Evaluating Community Participation in the effective management of protected areas. a case study of Lake Malawi National Park

    Tamanda Kaleke

    Year: 2015

    Document type: Student Research

    This study evaluates community participation in effective management of protected areas by using the Lake Malawi National Park as a case study.

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    5437
  • Exploring the Impact of Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Policies on the South African Mining Sector

    Bongani Msimanga

    Year: 2015

    Document type: Student Research

    This study explores impacts of policies that South Africa developed in order to champion sustainable energy strategies based on energy efficiency and non-conventional energy sources, including renewable energy.

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    5435
    Renewable Energy
  • Fish Farming's potential In South Africa: A study of the market and the product of choice

    Alain Mahieu

    Year: 2015

    Document type: Student Research

    This research, presented as two articles, explores the potential for the development of the fish-farming sector in South Africa, and recommends suitable species. Although there is some literature on how fish-farming may have a place in South Africa’s sustainability quest, it is scarce. This research aims to enhance the literature base on fish-farming in South Africa, as well as provide further evidence on what the true potential is for fish-farming in South Africa

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    5436
  • Measuring household food security status in Taraba State, Nigeria: Comparing Key Indicators

    Chinweoke Ike

    Year: 2015

    Document type: Student Research

    This study identified how the three most widely used indicators of food security, the Household Food Insecurity Access Scale (HFIAS), Dietary Diversity Score (DDS) and the Coping Strategies Index (CSI), can complement one other in capturing the multiple dimensions of food security. The study brought them together in one cross-sectional household survey of 409 randomly selected households in Taraba State, Nigeria.

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    5438
    Food Systems
  • Microfranchising alternative service delivery configurations - creating economic and energy self-resilience

    Jack Radmore

    Year: 2015

    Document type: Student Research

    This thesis explores whether management techniques and operational practises of microfranchising can support the establishment of alternative service delivery configurations in the context of in situ informal settlement upgrading. 

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    5431
  • Natural building in South Africa: Assessing the niche-regime relationship through a 'latent niche' mediation

    Eamonn O'Rourke

    Year: 2015

    Document type: Student Research

    This study examines the natural building movement in South Africa in an attempt to determine the systemic influences that appear to confine it to a small market operating at the very edge of the mainstream building sector.

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    5432