Climate cHange dIplomacy, LeaDership and ResilieNce


The Hugo Observatory will coordinate the CHILDRN project, aimed at reinforcing educational and research capacities on climate change in Maldives. Through close cooperation with the Maldives National University (MNU), the University of Economics of Bratislava and the University of Paris, CHILDRN will strive to empower the Maldivian society to tackle the pressing issue of climate change in the fields of climate diplomacy, leadership and resilience. The project will be funded by the Erasmus+ Programme and will span over a period of three years (2021-2024), with strong institutional ties enduring after the end of the project.


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Given its ecological profile and economic dependency on limited resources, the Maldives archipelago is particularly vulnerable to climate change: while sea-rising level represents an existential threat to Maldivian islands, climate change also imperils the coral reefs on which the fishery industry heavily relies. However, the country’s vulnerability to climate change is also imputable to its educational system which insufficiently and inadequately addresses environmental degradations. Besides, the lack of resources and funds available to undertake research on the topic has led the Maldivian government to rely on global data that doesn’t take Maldivian specificities into account. Based on these observations, CHILDRN will aim at supporting higher education institutions to help the climate leaders of tomorrow reach their fullest potential on the national and international stage. 

The project will be undertaken through close collaboration between four partners: the Maldives National University, the University of Liège (Belgium), the University of Paris (France) and the University of Economics in Bratislava (Slovakia).


Main Objectives

The overall goal of CHILDRN is to build the capacity of the MNU and the Maldavian society at-large to tackle the pressing issue of climate change in the fields of climate diplomacy, leadership and resilience.

This will be achieved through three main objectives, each of which has been developed jointly with the MNU in order to respond effectively to local realities. 

  1. Improve and strengthen the teaching capacities of partner institutions in the field of climate studies 
  2. Encourage interdisciplinary academic cooperation and exchanges to strengthen the research capacities of partner institutions 
  3. Implement and develop joint activities, events, publications and projects related to diplomacy, leadership and resilience in the face of climate change 

The collaboration will allow the implementation of a new master programme dealing with climate issues. The project also includes student and staff exchanges between the partner countries. In addition to improving research and teaching capacities, the partners will participate in joint project proposals, such as publications, teaching activities, panels and project proposals concerning environmental diplomacy and geopolitics.   



Lisa Thibaut
Hugo Observatory


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