Book Launch of Dr Younus in Adelaide

Book Launch of Dr Younus in Adelaide

Dr Younus’ book launch program was held on 25th September at Mitchell Building in Adelaide University. The book launch was kicked-off by Professor Nick Harvey, Director, Centre for Coastal Research, University of Adelaide and Nobel Laureate; the program was launched by Professor Jennie Shaw, Dean of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Adelaide. Many academics of South Australian Universities along with various professionals of Bangladeshi community participated on this book launch program. Associate Professor Dr Mahfuz Aziz of University of South Australia, Dr Muhammad Haque of UNISA, Dr Shahid Ullah of Flinders University and BASSA, Dr Mohammad Ahmedullah, Consultant and President, Bangladesh Medical Society of SA,Dr Mohammed Wazid, General Secretary of Bangladesh Medical Society of SA, Mrs Dr Abu Siddique Miah, President, SABCA and many doctoral scholars were present on that occasion.

About the author

A Bangladeshi-Australian Scientist, Dr Md Younus’ current book on Vulnerability and Adaptation (V&A) to Climate Change in Bangladesh: Processes, Assessments and Effects has been published by Springer (Netherlands) (foreword written by Nobel Laureate Professor Harvey; endorsed by Nobel Laureate Professor Yunus; available at, price US$ 139). Dr Younus, Fellow of Adelaide University, Australia, is a pioneer researcher who has been working on V&A issues with some World authorities: Professors Nick Harvey, Martin Williams, Q K Ahmad, Munir Morad, and Richard Warrick since 1994. Dr Younus taught several courses: Environmental Studies: Climate Change and Human Adaptation, Environmental Decision Making Tools, Cities as Human Environments, and Research Project Design and Management in Flinders School of the Environment, Australia; has presented many papers in international conferences in the UK, the USA, Australia, Finland, Norway, and Bangladesh; and published many articles in international scientific journals. He is a member of the Institute of Australian Geographers, ISEE and Australia New Zealand Society for Ecological Economics (ANZSEE), Regional Studies Association, UK, Bangladesh Geographical Society (BGS), Bangladesh National Geographical Association (BNGA) and Bangla Academy.

Book Findings

The IPCC (2007, 2014) warned that the megadelta basins in South Asia, such as the Ganges Brahmaputra Meghna (GBM) will be at greatest risk due to increased flooding, and that the region’s poverty would reduce its adaptation capacity. A key issue in assessing vulnerability and adaptation (V&A) in response to extreme flood events (EFEs) in the GBM river basin is the concept of autonomous adaptation. This book investigates autonomous adaptation using a multimethod technique which includes two participatory rapid appraisals (PRA), a questionnaire survey of 140 participant analyses over 14 mauzas in the case study area, group and in-depth discussions and a literature review.

The study has four key approaches. First, it reviews the flood literature for Bangladesh from 1980 to 2014 and identifies a general description of flood hazard characteristics, history, and research trends, causes of floods and types of floods. Second, it examines farmers’ crop adaptation processes in a case study area at Islampur, Bangladesh, in response to different types of EFEs and describes how farmers have been adapting to the extreme floods over time. Third, it assesses the V&A in response to three EFEs in 1998, 1995, and 1988. V&A are categorized on the basis of a weighted matrix index. The book uses PRA methodology and makes an important methodological contribution for assessing V&A. Fourth; the book assesses the economic consequences of failure effects of autonomous adaptation in response to EFEs. The results show that Bangladeshi farmers are highly resilient to EFEs, but the economic consequences of failure effects of autonomous crop adaptation (FEACA) on marginal farmers are large. These failure effects are defined as total crop loss against potential production, plus total agricultural cost multiplied by the number of flood events in the studied area. Total agricultural cost includes cost of seedlings, fertilizer, pesticides, land preparation, human labor, and watering. The book estimates that the crop- related loss plus plants and houses damaged due to extreme flooding in 1998 in Bangladesh was US$14001.26 million.

The book contributes to current knowledge by filling three important research gaps as follows: (1) farmers’ autonomous crop adaptation processes in response to various types of EFEs; (2) methodological contribution for assessing V&A through PRA; and (3) the economic consequences of the failure effects of autonomous crop adaptations. The findings of this study can act as a guide to policy decisions for effective allocation of adaptation funds at community level in Bangladesh. The book concludes that urgent action is needed to improve the sustainable crop adaptation capacity at community level in the foreseeable future to cope with extreme floods under a regime of climate change.

About the attached photo

On the photo: from Left Professor Nick Harvey, Nobel Laureate and Director, Centre for Coastal Research, The University of Adelaide, Professor Jennie Shaw, Dean of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, the University of Adelaide, the book author Dr Md Younus, Visiting Research Fellow, the University of Adelaide, Emeritus Professor Martin Williams, Adelaide University and Associate Professor Mahfuz Aziz, Australia Prime Minister Award Winner and head of the department Electrical Engineering, the University of South Australia.

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