Welcome to the Right Livelihood College Campus Bonn!

Linking the Right Livelihood Award ("Alternative Nobel Prize") Laureates with applied and interdisciplinary research and education

The Right Livelihood College (RLC) is a global education and research initiative of universities and the Right Livelihood Award Foundation, also known as the "Alternative Nobel Prize". The RLC promotes and implements transdisciplinary education and research on social justice, poverty and inequality reduction, and environmental sustainability together with laureates of the “Alternative Nobel Prize”.

Special annual partnership between City of Bonn and RLC Campus Bonn

The RLC Campus Bonn is the annual partner of the City of Bonn in 2020.

This special partnership celebrates the 10th anniversary of the RLC Campus in Bonn. Read more here in English or here in German.

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New PhD researcher Irene Ojuok writes chapter on women’s participation in FMNR

Irene Ojuok, who has just started her 3-year research project on Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration (FMNR) with Right Livelihood Award Laureate Tony Rinaudo and World Vision Kenya, has written a chapter on women participation in FMNR for climate resilience. Her findings were published in the African Handbook of Climate Change Adaptation.


Despite the fact that land degradation is both natural and human-induced, it is proven that human activities pose greatest threat and these include unsustainable land management practices such as destruction of natural vegetation, overcultivation, overgrazing, poor land husbandry, and excessive forest conversion. Other than reduced productivity, land degradation also leads to socioeconomic problems such as food insecurity, insufficient water, and regular loss of livestock which exacerbate poverty, conflicts, and gender inequalities that negatively impact mostly women and children especially the rural population. Increased efforts by governments, donors, and partners toward reversing land degradation through community-led, innovative, and effective approaches therefore remain to be crucial today than never before!

Farmer-managed natural regeneration (FMNR) is a proven sustainable land management technology to restore degraded wasteland and improve depleted farmland. This approach has been tested across Africa with high success rates. In spite of the huge local, regional, and global efforts plus investments put on promoting FMNR across different landscapes among vulnerable communities for climate resilience, the implementation of such projects has not been as successful as intended due to slow women uptake and participation in the approach. In order of ensuring women who are mostly at highest risk to impacts of climate change enjoy the multiple benefits that come along with FMNR, the success rate for uptake of FMNR especially among women need to be enhanced.

This chapter seeks to explore drivers and barriers of women participation in uptake of FMNR for climate resilience. Findings will be shared from a 3-year project dubbed Integrated Management of Natural Resources for Resilience in ASALs and a Food and Nutrition project both in Laisamis, Marsabit County, Kenya. The program interventions on natural resource management for livelihoods seek to integrate gender and conflict prevention and prioritize sustainable, market-based solutions to address the persistent challenges. The chapter discusses findings, successes, and lessons learned from the actions and the requirement to position women as vulnerable groups at the center of initiatives designed to address the climate change crisis. The outcome of this chapter will enhance gender-responsive FMNR programing through awareness creation, effective organization/project designs, strategies, and plans together with advocacy and policy influence. Limitations of the study and main recommendations for future programing in similar contexts are also shared.

Read the full article here.

Ojuok I., Ndayizigiye T. (2020) Women Participation in Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration for Climate Resilience: Laisamis, Marsabit County, Kenya. In: Leal Filho W., Ogugu N., Adelake L., Ayal D., da Silva I. (eds) African Handbook of Climate Change Adaptation

. Springer, Cham. doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-42091-8_152-1

Meet RLC Bonn PhD student Irene Ojuok

Irene Ojuok from Kenya was selected for the RLC PhD scholarship 2020. In this interview, she introduces her research objectives and motivation.


How did you learn about the RLC programme at ZEF and what was your motivation to apply for it?

I learnt about the RLC Programme at ZEF through my colleagues and friends who knew my passion in Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration (FMNR) as a holistic community approach land restoration. The RLC research project was totally in sync with my interests and an opportunity to study at a German prestigious institution where there is rich expertise in environment and development issues was my greatest desire.

The RLC scholarship aims at connecting young researchers with Right Livelihood Award Laureates. Which are the partners you will be working with?

My key partners will be Laureate Tony Rinaudo who was awarded the Right Livelihood Award, also known as the “Alternative Nobel Prize”, in 2018. I will also be working together with World Vision Kenya who have been a key champion of scaling up community driven FMNR with the support of the Kenyan government.

What is your research topic and why did you choose it?

In light of severe land degradation challenges we face in Kenya, I sought to investigate the socioeconomic impact of FMNR on household resilience to climate change. This will unpack what drives farmers to take up different land restoration approaches and how this is linked to climate resilience.

What are your primary research objectives?

My key research objectives include:

  • To establish how women and men benefit differently from FMNR
  • To identify the link between income and scale up of FMNR
  • To explore to what extent networks and collaboration affect FMNR adoption
  • To establish how local level policy influence uptake of FMNR

Your doctoral programme was supposed to start in August already, but the COVID-19 pandemic rattled the usual timeline. How has the pandemic affected the start of your research and how do you look into the year 2021?

Due to the pandemic, I could not travel to Germany in time. Fortunately, the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) offered to initiate online language courses which I was able to undertake while in Kenya. ZEF equally organised our academic programs from October to begin virtually so we started our classes. Even though I already arrived in Bonn, I still study in my room, this maybe the new world we are getting introduced to because of the pandemic. With the rise of COVID-19 cases, we have more limited physical interactions which do not help maximize our exposure and engagements to learn from one another. My hope for 2021 forward is that we may bounce back better and learn from the challenges we experienced from this pandemic.

In Conversation with Tony Rinaudo / VIDEO

On October 8, The RLC Campus Bonn hosted the opening session “Re-Greening the Future: In Conversation with ‘Forest Maker’ Tony Rinaudo” of the @Bonnglobal series at Daring Cities 2020.

During the session, Rinaudo, who received the Right Livelihood Award in 2018, talked about his mission and work.

Here you can watch the full conversation:

Tony took some time to answer some more audience questions which were raised during the session. You can read them here.


Who we are


Dr. Till Stellmacher (RLC Bonn Coordinator)
Mail: t.stellmacher( at )uni-bonn.de
Tel: 0049-(0)-228-734907

Alejandro Mora Motta (RLC Alumni/Global Secretariat Coordinator)
Mail: alejandro.mora.motta( at )uni-bonn.de
Tel: 0049-(0)-228-736707

Theresa Sander (RLC Programme Assistant)
Mail: t.sander( at )uni-bonn.de
Tel: 0049-(0)-228-734906

Right Livelihood College
RLC Campus Bonn/ RLC Global Secretariat
Genscherallee 3
53113 Bonn, Germany

Fax: 0049-(0)-228-731972

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