Drawdown Lift

Drawdown Lift works to deepen our collective understanding of the links between climate change solutions, health, and improving human well-being, particularly in emerging economies in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia.

When climate science and solutions are more accessible, thought leaders and change-makers from around the world can help boost economic, health, and educational equity while simultaneously addressing climate change.

Launched in January 2021, this new initiative seeks to address both extreme poverty and climate change in low- and middle-income countries by collaboratively identifying, promoting, and advancing solutions designed to catalyze positive, equitable change. Though research in two interconnected, overlapping areas of concern—reducing poverty and addressing climate impacts—should go hand-in-hand, current work often exists in silos. Drawdown Lift works to break down disciplinary walls and find solutions that can address climate change and extreme poverty, and enhance human well-being around the world.

Project Drawdown’s work continues to highlight climate solutions that directly benefit human well-being—including health and education, improved cookstoves, Indigenous peoples’ forest tenure, sustainable agricultural intensification for smallholders, and more. Drawdown Lift spotlights drawdown solutions that identify poverty alleviation and human well-being co-benefits—the approaches that play double-duty for climate and other challenges often faced by low- and middle-income countries. This initiative engages academic researchers and practitioners interested in evidence-based, high-impact poverty alleviation, and human well-being practices worldwide. 

Drawdown Lift focuses on three key strategies: 

  1. synthesizing knowledge about—and looking for connections within—existing climate and poverty solutions

  2. connecting with key leaders and broad audiences about our findings and “win-win” solutions they reveal 

  3. encouraging decision-makers to deploy these “win-win” solutions in their global development work

Also core to Drawdown Lift: the practice of amplifying youth voices and the power of communities historically excluded from collaborative research and environmental work. If you are interested in learning more about Drawdown Lift’s work, please contact us.

 

Advisory Council

The Drawdown Lift Advisory Council shapes, guides, and informs our research, identifies opportunities to collaborate, and lifts up the work of solutions-based climate changemakers around the world. The inaugural group of Lift Advisory Council members represent diverse disciplines and bring experiences from around the world.

Dr. Abiba Longwe-Ngwira
Abiba Longwe-Ngwira
Dr. Abiba Longwe-Ngwira
Abiba Longwe-Ngwira

Dr. Abiba Longwe-Ngwira is a social scientist with vast multidisciplinary experience in policy-oriented research, evaluation, knowledge translation, capacity building, and monitoring and evaluation. She serves as the Director of Monitoring, Evaluation and Research for the International Training and Education Center for Health (I-TECH). Abiba has more than 10 years of experience in policy-oriented research focusing on the linkages between reproductive health investments, poverty alleviation, and socio-economic development in Africa. Abiba has worked on public health evaluation projects on HIV/AIDS, TB, and TB/HIV co-infection. She has also worked in the agricultural sector on donor-funded projects aimed at alleviating poverty, mitigating climate change, and improving the livelihoods of the rural population in Malawi. Abiba is an alum of Population Reference Bureau’s Policy Communication Fellows Program. She holds a PhD in Management Sciences (Development Economics), a MS in Rural Development, and a MS and BS in Agricultural Economics. 

Alice Macharia
Alice Macharia
Alice Macharia
Alice Macharia

Alice Macharia channels her insights and passion with a purpose of improving people’s lives and protecting the planet we call home. In her role as the Vice-President of Africa Programs with the Jane Goodall Institute (JGI), Alice leads the implementation of the Africa Programs Strategy, which seeks to conserve chimpanzees across their range while living in peaceful coexistence with their neighboring human communities. Alice has over 15 years of progressive experience in project design and implementation, grant administration, and program management of integrated conservation and development programming in Africa. During her career, Alice has championed integration of population, health, and environment and served as an evaluator of the Elinor Ostrom Award on Collective Governance of the Commons. Alice has an MA in Sustainable International Development from Brandeis University, an MA in Geography from Miami University, and a BS in Geography from the University of Nairobi.

Assalama Sidi
Assalama Sidi
Assalama Sidi
Assalama Sidi

Assalama Sidi is a human and women rights activist who has worked tirelessly to promote equality and social justice for the past two decades across West Africa and beyond. She has worked in development areas that include promoting gender and development, lifting up the voices of women and girls in remote areas, girls’ education and protection, youth entrepreneurship, and local civil society organization strengthening. She is also an experienced humanitarian worker who has led various initiatives that focus on food assistance, water access, and protection against gender-based violence in refugee and internally displaced camps in Niger. She has held various leadership positions with the United States Peace Corps and Plan International in different countries. Assalama is currently the Regional Director for Oxfam in West and Central Africa where she provides vision, strategic guidance and support to Oxfam programs in the 12 countries where Oxfam operates in West and Central Africa. Assalama graduated from the University of Niamey with a degree in Sociology and has earned many certificates in leadership, including a certificate in Management from Harvard Business School. She is fluent in six languages.

Dr. Christina Kwauk
Christina Kwauk
Dr. Christina Kwauk
Christina Kwauk

Dr. Christina Kwauk is a social scientist with a current interdisciplinary focus on education for climate action. She is an expert on girls’ education in developing countries, 21st century skills and youth empowerment, sport for development, and the intersections of gender, education, and climate change. Christina is a co-editor (with Radhika Iyengar) of Curriculum and Learning for Climate Action: Toward an SDG 4.7 Roadmap for Systems Change (forthcoming 2021) and co-author (with Gene Sperling and Rebecca Winthrop) of What Works in Girls’ Education: Evidence for the World’s Best Investment. She has published numerous policy papers, including “The new green learning agenda: Approaches to quality education for climate empowerment,” as well as academic articles on topics in climate change education, gender, health, and international development and education. Christina is an education consultant and Research Director at Unbounded Associates, a Future Rising Visiting Scholar at Girl Rising, and a non-resident fellow in the Center for Universal Education at Brookings. She holds a PhD in Comparative and International Development Education, MA in Social Sciences, and BA in Psychology. 

Debbie Aung Din Taylor
Debbie Aung Din
Debbie Aung Din Taylor
Debbie Aung Din

Debbie Aung Din is Co-founder of Proximity Designs, a non-profit social business operating in Myanmar since 2004 that delivers affordable and innovative products and services for farm families living in poverty. Debbie has been engaged in design and economic research in Myanmar since 1995. She has also lived and worked in the United States, Cambodia, and Indonesia. She has worked for NGOs, USAID, the UN, and the World Bank. She has received social entrepreneurship awards from the Schwab Foundation (World Economic Forum) and the Skoll Foundation. Proximity, which is focused on the agriculture sector, has developed a unique platform of financing, farm technologies, and agronomy advice, which delivers affordable and innovative products and services to small farmers in their journey out of poverty. Products and services are designed to boost farm productivity and increase household incomes by an average of US $250 per year. Proximity small-farm services have served over 10,000 villages and enabled 3.5 million people in rural Myanmar to grow their farm enterprises and afford basic food, health care, and education for their families. Debbie holds a MA from Harvard University in Public Policy and Development Economics and a BA in Geography. 

Fiona Mavhinga
Fiona Mavhinga
Fiona Mavhinga
Fiona Mavhinga

Fiona Mavhinga serves as the Executive Advisor for CAMFED Association and was one of the first young women to complete her education with support from CAMFED, an organization that is supporting girls to learn, thrive and lead change. Fiona is a lawyer and leads on the strategic development of the CAMFED Association, the Association founded by former CAMFED clients who organize and act on behalf of girls and young women and contribute to their communities. Growing up in Zimbabwe, Fiona experienced first-hand the vulnerability of young women who manage to complete secondary school–with no resources and no employment opportunities available in rural areas–which she overcame to become a key founder of the CAMFED Association. Organized into elected committees from district to national level, the Association provides a robust mechanism for cascading knowledge and offering training and leadership opportunities to young school leaders. Connected through mobile technology, young women overcome rural isolation, help build each other’s lives, and use their experience and expertise to support many more vulnerable children to stay in school, thrive and lead change. The CAMFED Association now provides the backbone of the programs through which CAMFED is bringing about systemic change. As Executive Advisor, CAMFED Association, Fiona is leading on ways to grow and replicate this powerful model. Fiona has a MA in International Law and Legal Studies and a Bachelor Degree in Law.

Glory Oguegbu
Glory Oguegbu
Glory Oguegbu
Glory Oguegbu

Glory Oguegbu is an award-winning development entrepreneur whose goal is to be a positive part of people’s lives and make a good impact. Glory is the founder of Glow Initiative for Economic Empowerment under which her environmental program, Climate Smart Nigeria, promotes Climate Change Education in Nigerian institutions and provides capacity building on renewable energy technologies. In February 2019, she established the Renewable Energy Technology Training Institute (RETTI) which grooms efficient installers and entrepreneurs to serve as a competent workforce for the renewable energy industry and provide solutions to electricity problems as entrepreneurs. Glory recently launched the RETTI Virtual University- Africa’s first online university for easy access and affordable solar and renewable energy education. Glory has authored four books to promote climate change and renewable energy literacy for children in primary and secondary schools and tertiary institutions. She has received multiple energy and leadership-focused awards, including the Nigerian Star award from the U.S. Embassy in Nigeria and holds a BS in Geography and Planning.

Jean Christophe Rusatira
Jean Christophe Rusatira
Jean Christophe Rusatira
Jean Christophe Rusatira

Trained as a medical doctor and public health professional, Dr. Jean Christophe Rusatira’s work has been in clinical practice, public health advocacy, and research. For four years, worked as Program Officer at the Bill & Melinda Gates Institute for Population and Reproductive Health of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. He led the Gates Institute’s team that developed the demographic dividend effort index and co-chaired the Scientific and Demographic Dividend Subcommittees of the International Conference on Family Planning, which brought together more than 4,000 professionals. Previously, he worked as a clinician in different hospitals in Rwanda before joining the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health to pursue his MPH as a Sommer Scholar. He is one of the inaugural awardees of the 120 Under 40: The New Generation of Family Planning Leaders, recognizing his public health practice work through Healthy People Rwanda, a local non-profit that he founded, and the International Youth Alliance for Family Planning, which he co-founded. His current work focuses on promoting evidence-based public health practice, social entrepreneurship, and leadership development. He is currently pursuing his PhD program at Johns Hopkins University focusing on population, family, and reproductive health.

Jill Baumgartner
Jill Baumgartner
Jill Baumgartner
Jill Baumgartner

Dr. Jill Baumgartner is an Associate Professor and William Dawson Scholar in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at McGill University in Canada. She studies exposure to environmental pollutants and its effects on human health in the context of urbanization and development. Her publications appear in top journals in environmental health and in interdisciplinary journals including PNAS and Nature Energy. Jill was recognized as “an extraordinary scientist under age 40” by World Economic Forum (2018) and received FRQS and CIHR Investigator Awards (2015, 2021), McGill’s Maude Abbott Award for research excellence in early career (2016), and a Trottier Institute for Science and Public Policy Fellowship (2019). She serves as an Associate Editor for Atmospheric Environment and as an advisor to the World Health Organization on air pollution and health. Dr. Baumgartner holds a joint PhD in Population Health Science and Environment & Resources from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a MS in Population and International Health from Harvard University.

Dr. Moffatt K. Ngugi
Moffatt K. Ngugi
Dr. Moffatt K. Ngugi
Moffatt K. Ngugi

Dr. Moffatt K. Ngugi is a supervisory Agriculture Development Officer at the Center for Agriculture, Production Systems Division with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Liberia. He leads the Food Integrated Systems for Food Production team, working on issues related to agriculture, nutrition, and natural resources management. Moffatt is a geospatial ecologist by training with a background in rangeland management, physical land resources, and agroecology. He studied at the University of Nairobi (BS), Ghent University (MS) and Colorado State University (PhD). Examples of his research and work experience include dissertation research on social and ecological characterization of herbivore key resource areas in the horn of Africa, postdoctoral research at University of California Davis using GIS/remote sensing to constrain biogeochemical modeling of greenhouse gases, working as a consultant for terrestrial carbon science, and inventory of forage resources in Dakota grasslands in the US at USDA-ARS (Agricultural Research Service).

Dr. Mohamed Bakarr
Mohamed Imam Bakarr
Dr. Mohamed Bakarr
Mohamed Imam Bakarr

Dr. Mohamed Bakarr is currently Lead Environmental Specialist in the Global Environment Facility (GEF) Secretariat located at the World Bank in Washington, DC. Prior to joining the GEF, Mohamed was Senior Vice President and Executive Director of the Center for Applied Biodiversity Science at Conservation International (CI), where he led a team of over 60 scientists and professionals engaged in high quality research to support global biodiversity conservation efforts by CI and partners. Mohamed also served for four years as Director of Strategic Initiatives and Assistant Director General at the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) based in Nairobi, Kenya. Mohamed has expertise in a broad range of issues related to the tropics, but focuses mainly on linkages among biodiversity conservation, agriculture, and human livelihoods in the African rainforest regions. Mohamed obtained his MS (1992) and PhD (1997) degrees in Tropical Biology from the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida, while on a USAID funded African Graduate Fellowship, and earned a BS in Biological Sciences at Njala University, Sierra Leone.

Dr. Monica Jain
Monica Jain
Dr. Monica Jain
Monica Jain

Dr. Monica Jain is a development economist with more than twenty years of experience in the area of evidence-informed policies. Her research focuses on poverty and development issues, especially nutrition and health. At 3ie, Monica manages a global portfolio of policy-relevant evaluations focused on immunization and Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) informed sectors like environment, infrastructure, governance, and public finance. She is a member of an international WHO working group that is tasked with developing guidance and tools to measure the drivers of vaccination uptake. She is also part of the Suvita advisory board. Before joining 3ie, Monica worked at the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) in Washington, DC and the World Bank Poverty Reduction and Economic Management unit in New Delhi. She holds a PhD in Economics from University of California, Riverside and a MPhil and Masters in Economics from Delhi School of Economics, India.

Dr. Ndola Prata
Ndola Prata
Dr. Ndola Prata
Ndola Prata

Dr. Ndola Prata is a public health physician and medical demographer from Angola. She earned her medical degree from the University of Angola and a MS in medical demography from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Ndola began her career practicing medicine in Angola for 10 years, and served as Head of the Social Statistics Department at the National Institute of Statistics of Angola. Her research, which is based in sub-Saharan Africa, focuses on the design, implementation, and evaluation of interventions that maximize distribution and financing mechanisms to increase access and utilization of sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services, particularly for underserved populations. Her projects investigate strategies for harnessing existing resources on human capacity and health care infrastructure while gathering evidence for setting priorities on national health agendas. Ndola is the Fred H. Bixby Endowed Chair in Population and Family Planning and a Professor of Maternal and Child Health at UC-Berkeley, where she teaches courses. Ndola has conducted research and published on topics related to family planning, financing and ability to pay for SRH programs, adolescent SRH and agency, maternal health, gender, the use of misoprostol in obstetrics, and women’s empowerment, fertility and family planning. She is the gender lead for One Health Next Generation.

Dr. Samuel Myers
Samuel Myers
Dr. Samuel Myers
Samuel Myers

Dr. Samuel Myers studies the human health impacts of accelerating disruptions to Earth’s natural systems, a field recently dubbed Planetary Health. He is a Principal Research Scientist at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and is the founding Director of the Planetary Health Alliance. Sam received his BA from Harvard College, MD from Yale University School of Medicine, and MPH from the Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health. He performed his internal medicine residency at UCSF and is Board Certified in Internal Medicine. As the Director of the Planetary Health Alliance, Sam oversees a multi-institutional effort focused on understanding and quantifying the human health impacts of disrupting Earth’s natural systems and translating that understanding into resource management decisions globally. Dr. Myers served as a Commissioner on the Lancet-Rockefeller Foundation Commission on Planetary Health and a member of the Lead Expert Group of the Global Panel on Agriculture, Food Systems, and Nutrition. He is the co-editor with Howard Frumkin of Planetary Health: Protecting Nature to Protect Ourselves.

Tapas Ranjan Chakraborty
Tapas Ranjan Chakraborty
Tapas Ranjan Chakraborty
Tapas Ranjan Chakraborty

Tapas Ranjan Chakraborty has been working in the field of climate change and natural resource management for the last 20 years, focusing on community resilience, governance, technology transfer, disaster risk reduction, climate action, biodiversity conservation, community rights, and ecosystem management. Currently Tapas is the Senior Programme Manager of the Climate Change Programme of BRAC. Previously, he worked with leading environmental organizations and think tanks including Oxfam, Sustainable Development Resource Center, Bangladesh POUSH, Center for Natural Resource Management, and the Bangladesh Center for Advanced Studies. Tapas has experience in community mobilization, wetland management, and environmental education. He was the first country coordinator for the Asia Youth Environment Network Youth Programme and was a member of the group that started the ‘Know Risk No Risk’ movement of disaster awareness in Bangladesh. Tapas has developed more than 50 mass-awareness materials on climate change and is skilled in policy influence. Bridging the gap between science and policy is his passion. He holds a Masters in Zoology/Animal Biology from Jahangirnagar University. 

Publications and Media

Drawdown Lift publishes a wide-range of reports, policy briefs, and fact-sheets that are available to view, download and read. Our work is also regularly featured in and cited by leading media outlets around the world.

REPORT: "Essential tips for talking about Project Drawdown's Health and Education solution" — Drawdown Lift reflects on how to break down disciplinary walls and lift up global solutions that address climate change and extreme poverty, and enhance human well-being around the world. READ MORE

IN THE NEWS

From op-Eds to reported stories, Drawdown Lift is informing and influencing conversations at the intersection of climate solutions, health, and human well-being.

OP-ED: "Desperate for Hope? Linking Human Well-Being and Climate Solutions is a Way Forward" — When climate, poverty alleviation, and human well-being are addressed together, a vision of a better future emerges like a beacon in the night. READ MORE

OP-ED: "Linking Reproductive Rights and Climate Solutions Is the Only Way Forward" — Just as the [Covid-19] pandemic has brought our world’s climate and health crises into sharp relief—the time is ripe to include women’s reproductive rights as part of our climate solutions toolbox. READ MORE