South Africa’s vulnerability to climate change arises from high levels of poverty, as well as its dependence on climate-sensitive sectors, including agriculture and water, for human livelihoods and economic development. Recognizing the important role played by provincial and local actors in addressing these issues, the country has demonstrated a strong commitment to vertical integration, the process of linking national and sub-national adaptation planning, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation (M&E).
As a means of information sharing, South Africa’s Let’s Respond Toolkit is an example of how web-based platforms can be used for sharing information between different levels of government, as well as with non-governmental stakeholders. Lessons learned include:
- The Let’s Respond Toolkit provides key information to support stakeholder engagement in adaptation planning, including draft municipal climate change plans that are open for public comment and information on past and upcoming stakeholder workshops held throughout the planning process.
- While there may be barriers for some individuals or groups in accessing this information due to a lack of literacy and/or Internet access, it is a good starting point for informing stakeholders about what is occurring and opportunities to provide inputs.
- By making information and documents available across provinces and municipalities, the platform offers users in different jurisdictions the opportunity to learn from the experiences of others.