The University of Leeds and the University of Reading have both been awarded Queen’s Anniversary Prizes in this year’s round of awards, for their work on weather and climate, and SWIFT has been cited in both of the prizes. The Queen’s Anniversary Prizes are the UK’s highest national honour for universities, and for a project to contribute to two awards is a remarkable achievement.
The awards are for the whole university and recognise a body of work involving many researchers, educators and administrators. National and international partnership has been a key element of both prizes.
“The great thing about the Queen’s Anniversary Prizes is that they recognise teamwork and partnership. In that regard, it’s particularly pleasing that both of the two UK university partners in SWIFT have this year won a prize related to our work. I hope that all of the SWIFT partners in the UK and Africa will also take some satisfaction from this recognition of our successful collaborations. The awards do not reflect a single achievement or discovery, but a wider academic programme with benefits to society. SWIFT has been able to achieve major progress in implementing improved forecasts in Africa, and we have much more we still need to do in the years to come. It is wonderful now to stop for a moment to celebrate these prizes and the encouragement they give to our work together.”
– SWIFT Joint PI, Professor Doug Parker
“The Unit has a leading role in the GCRF African-SWIFT project (Science for Weather Information and Forecasting Techniques) to advance weather forecasting in Africa on timescales from hours to months. We have demonstrated forecast skill of intense precipitation over timescales from hours to weeks and are working with operational centres to introduce verification and evaluation on all timescales into their standard operating practices. A key component has been the use of forecast testbeds to develop and share best practice. We led training within a synoptic-scale forecast testbed in Kenya, with a further testbed planned for Senegal in 2021. In addition to on-the-job training, we have developed and delivered summer schools for national meteorological organisations in Ghana and Kenya.”
– Andrew Charlton-Perez, Professor of Meteorology at Reading
SWIFT is led by the UK National Centre for Atmospheric Science (NCAS) which has research teams hosted at the Universities of Leeds and Reading