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Commonwealth Futures Climate Research Cohort

Theme: Global challenges

26 researchers for COP26

The ACU and the British Council have partnered to establish the Commonwealth Futures Climate Research Cohort, supporting 26 rising-star researchers to bring local knowledge to a global stage in the lead-up to the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26).

Throughout 2021, this unique and diverse cohort will build international collaborations and work with experts to influence issues related to climate and environment in their communities and beyond.   

The cohort convenes researchers with a expertise in a range of disciplines, and who have a deep understanding of communities disproportionately impacted by climate change. Reflecting the diversity of the Commonwealth, members of cohort are based at 25 ACU member universities from 16 countries. 

Throughout 2021, the 26 researchers will attend a series of expert-led workshops and design and deliver peer-led research-to-action projects. They will be mentored by senior academics and experts in the sector, and to further their engagement with global climate stakeholders, they will be travelling to Glasgow in November to attend the landmark COP26 conference. 

By supporting the development and retention of research leaders, the ACU-British Council partnership works to build a more equitable research landscape, ensuring that university research continues to thrive, inspire action, and play an essential role delivering impactful climate solutions across the Commonwealth. 

Research-to-action facilitator

Dr. Haseeb Irfanullah

Dr Haseeb Irfanullah, University of Liberal Arts Bangladesh (ULAB)

Haseeb is a visiting research fellow at the Center for Sustainable Development (CSD) of the ULAB. He teaches there and strategizes the implementation of centre’s research, learning and teaching priorities. He also works as an independent consultant in the areas of environment, climate change, and research system. Haseeb often introduces himself as a biologist-turned development facilitator, with modest interest in research and climate change. At the current stage of his 21-year professional evolution, he finds his niche in nature-people-knowledge nexus.

Haseeb and his co-workers have so far published 37 peer-reviewed journal papers; have authored, edited and contributed to more than 45 books and other publications; and have written about 120 articles and thought pieces on diverse topics, including climate change.

As research-to-action facilitator, Haseeb plays a key role supporting the cohort's research-to-action projects and creating an enabling environment for success. He is also participating in the programme as a mentor.


Stories from the Climate Research Cohort


This space is dedicated to celebrating the voices of researchers around the world, who are united by a vision of a greener, fairer, and healthier planet for all.

Throughout 2021, we will be featuring stories written by the multidisciplinary researchers and mentors of the Commonwealth Futures Climate Research Cohort, who have each made their own distinguished journey in climate research and advocacy. Working in different corners of the world to make a difference, their stories will touch upon topics ranging from research impact and political engagement to personal inspirations, successes, and challenges at the intersection between research and action.

Entries are grouped under different topical themes, drawing attention to the multidimensional impact of climate change on society, politics, the economy, and the natural world. Themes will be continually updated, so make sure to check back regularly to access the latest stories.

Browse the entries by clicking on the themes below.

Available themes

Cohort Hub Themes (7)

Safeguarding our oceans

The oceans underpin nearly all processes of life on Earth, but the dual threats of climate change and pollution are wreaking havoc on fragile ecosystems. 

Cohort Hub Themes (6)

Looking towards COP26

On the fifth anniversary of the Paris Agreement, 2021 marks a key year for countries to step up their climate commitments and pledge to address the root causes of the climate crisis. 

Cohort Hub Themes (8)

Life on land

Every day, environmental researchers studying terrestrial life in all corners of the world help us better understand - and protect - the wonders of our natural world. 


Join the ACU's COP26 Campaign

#UnisForOurPlanet is our campaign to show how universities - and the people within them - are spearheading critical solutions and efforts to tackle climate change. Find out how you can join the conversation by clicking below.

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Web Crop (18)

Commonwealth Climate Resilience Network

With many Commonwealth countries on the frontline of climate change, the ACU Commonwealth Climate Resilience Network (CCRN) is working to build resilience within universities and their wider communities. 

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Palm trees and shoreline view by Jose Espinal
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Theme: Global challenges