NDMC Works World-Wide
The National Drought Mitigation Center has had a strong international component since it was established, building on the earlier success of the International Drought Information Center. The NDMC:
- Collaborated with the Center for Advanced Land Management Information Technologies, also based at UNL, the University of Maryland, College Park, and several Moroccan ministries on a World Bank-funded project that led to creation of the Morocco Composite Drought Index in 2015.
- Regularly consults for United Nations agencies such as the World Meteorological Organization, the Food and Agriculture Organization, USAID, the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), and others. The NDMC's founding director, Dr. Donald Wilhite, was one of the organizers of the High-Level Meeting on National Drought Policy, March 11-15, 2013, and others from the NDMC made presentations. One of the outcomes of that meeting was regional workshops around the world.
- In 2014 follow-on activities to the HMNDP, Wilhite gave the keynote talk and facilitated a National Drought Policy Capacity Building Workshop for the Asia/Pacific region, held in Hanoi, May 6-9. Wilhite was also involved in similar capacity building workshops in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Aug. 5-8, for East Africa, and will take part in another for West Africa, probably in November. Workshops for North Africa and the Near East were still to be scheduled. One for Central and Eastern Europe was held in July 2013, and another for Latin America and the Caribbean was held in Brazil in December 2013.
- The Integrated Drought Management Programme is a related effort, a joint initiative of the World Meteorological Organization and the Global Water Partnership, an NGO. Mike Hayes, NDMC director, is on its advisory committee, and Wilhite chairs the initiative’s advisory and management committees. Wilhite developed the National Drought Management Policy Guidelines: A Template for Action, just published by the IDMP. The IDMP maintains a list of drought strategies on its website, and is sponsoring regional pilot programs for Central and Eastern Europe, for the Horn of Africa, and for West Africa.
- Participates in efforts to build the Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS), launched at the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development and by the Group of Eight.
- Worked with the European Commission on MEDROPLAN, to develop drought preparedness guidelines for the countries in the Mediterranean region.
- Works with other regional and national drought centers. Don Wilhite, founding director of the NDMC, served as a consultant to help establish a Drought Management Center for Southeast Europe, hosted by Slovenia.
- Welcomes visiting scientists and students from around the world. Recent visitors have included Jaroslav Vido, a Ph.D. student from Slovakia, who is studying the impacts of drought on selected ecosystems; Jinsong Wang, from the Institute of Arid meteorology in Lanzhou, China, who studies drought monitoring and impact issues; and Linda Botterill, an Australian drought policy expert.
Between 2005 and 2011, the NDMC conducted activities on six of the world’s seven continents. NDMC representatives have been involved in workshops world-wide on drought monitoring and drought planning, including:
- Organizing and hosting a workshop in Lincoln, Nebraska, for experts from around the world to select a single index as the global standard for monitoring meteorological drought in December 2009. The NDMC participated in follow-up workshops on hydrological and agricultural drought indexes that were held, respectively, in Geneva, Switzerland, and in Murcia, Spain.
- Collaborating with Canadian and Mexican authors to produce the North American Drought Monitor.
- Collaborating with a group of scientists in the Czech Republic and Austria to enhance understanding of drought and soil climates, climate change and climate variabiilty.
- Making presentations, consulting or and conducting workshops on drought monitoring and planning in Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Belgium, Canada, Chile, China, Egypt, Ethiopia, India, Israel, Jordan, Mali, Mexico, Morocco, The Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Switzerland, Syria, Tunisia and Turkey.
- Conducting training on the Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI). The NDMC has distributed the SPI to more than 150 scientists in 60 countries around the world.