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SEEMI Project started

by Meike Will

In March, the new project SEEMI (Social-Ecological Effects of Microinsurance) started which is funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG). The 3-year PhD project is in close cooperation with the POLISES group and focuses on the conditions under which microinsurance may crowd out informal safety nets or act as a complement to them. Additional aims are to investigate how land users change their strategies given access to microinsurance and whether microinsurance can enhance the resilience of social-ecological systems to shocks.

To answer these research questions agent-based modelling will be combined with social network analysis. The model evaluation will comprise case studies related to the project which are provided from our cooperation partners concerning health insurance in Cambodia (Susan Steiner, Leibniz Universität Hannover) and drought insurance in Kenya and Ethiopia (Munenobu Ikegami, ILRI Nairobi and Leigh Johnson, University of Oregon, Eugene).

After the first very interesting weeks in this project I am now looking forward to its further challenging tasks. The combination of agent-based modelling and social network analysis is a new approach to the topic of microinsurance and I am curious about how it will work out. Additionally, I am very grateful to have different cooperation partners in our team which can help us to make our model more realistic.

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