PhD defence: Eefke Mollee – Københavns Universitet

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PhD defence: Eefke Mollee

Eefke Mollee defends her thesis

The use of urban plant resources for health and food security in Kampala, Uganda

Professor Morag McDonald, University of Bangor, UK
Associate Professor Anders Ræbild, IGN

Assessment Committee:
Professor Steve Newman, Biodiversity International Ltd, UK
Dr Andrew Adam-Bradford, Coventry University, UK
Professor Erik Dahl Kjær (chair), IGN

With high urbanisation rates, Sub-Saharan Africa face schallenges in providing sufficient, healthy and affordable foods for its growing urban populations. Urban biodiversity can
provide people with healthy food products, but represent an under-investigated resource. The aim of this thesis was to provide an understanding of the current and potential contribution of urban plant resources to human wellbeing in Kampala, Uganda. Through household surveys and garden inventories, links between species composition in gardens, use, socio-economic status and dietary diversity were explored. A total of 270 plant species were recorded, of which 248 species were considered useful, 101 were used as medicine and 70 species were used for food. Alhough there was no significant association between garden diversity and child nutrition, urban biodiversity was frequently used for food and medicine, and 5% of the food items were from homegardens. The findings indicate that urban homegardens and wild spaces in the cities an play an important role in human wellbeing.

The thesis is available for inspection at the PhD administration office 03.1.353 at Øster Voldgade 10.