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News: December 2019

Can African smallholders farm themselves out of poverty?

A great deal of research on agriculture in Africa is organised around the premise that intensification can take smallholder farmers out of poverty. The emphasis in programming often focuses on technologies that increase farm productivity and management practices that go along with them.

Yet the returns of such technologies are not often evaluated within a whole-farm context. And – critically – the returns for smallholders with very little available land have not received sufficient attention.

This article by David HarrisSchool of Natural SciencesJordan ChamberlinInternational Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), and Kai MauschWorld Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF)is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Publication date: 11 December 2019

Why some scientists want to rewrite the history of how we learned to walk

It’s not often that a fossil truly rewrites human evolution, but the recent discovery of an ancient extinct ape has some scientists very excited. According to its discoverers, Danuvius guggenmosi combines some human-like features with others that look like those of living chimpanzees. They suggest that it would have had an entirely distinct way of moving that combined upright walking with swinging from branches. And they claim that this probably makes it similar to the last shared ancestor of humans and chimps.

This article by Vivien Shaw of the School of Medical Sciences and Isabelle Catherine Winder, of the School of Natural Sciences, is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Publication date: 5 December 2019

Analysis of long-term satellite data reveals the dynamic changes of water bodies over large areas of China

New research published today in the Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences reports that the abundance of water bodies >1 km2 in China are up to 1.5 times greater than previous estimates. 

Publication date: 3 December 2019

Blazing a new trail into the forestry profession

Bangor student Jim Wright who is studying MSc Forestry (distance learning), currently registered on the programme at Bangor University, started the course in order to change career, after working in a variety of different industries. 

Publication date: 3 December 2019