Science Workshop of Build4People Work Package “Urban Climate” at Royal University of Phnom Penh

On 29 September 2023, the Build4People Work Package “Urban Climate”, led by the Institute for Climate and Energy Strategies (INKEK), organised a Science Workshop about Urban Climate Guidelines at the Department of Geography of the Royal University of Phnom Penh (RUPP). 

The main purpose of the Science Workshop was to present current research results and to achieve a general understanding of contents and methods of urban climate guidelines for Phnom Penh.

The Science Workshop was attended by lecturers on urban climatology as well as the responsible Professor for the climate change master course. It was further joined by Build4Peope team members from the Work Packages “Sustainable Building”, “Sustainable Neighbourhoods” and “Sustainable Urban Transformation”. Students from Geographical Department of RUPP, who were partly already involved in ongoing measurements plus more interested students did join, as well. In this way, it also served as an educational event for select local students.

The presentations showed the current status of the research and empirical results. Mainly the different urban climate maps, modelling on different scales were presented. Focus was given to the downscaling method to investigate microclimate conditions for urban design. This method can be generalised for more climate-sensitive neighbourhood planning. 

By means of the ENVIMET software, more studies will soon be carried out by the local research partners at RUPP. Education and practice will be provided by INKEK. Furthemore, the method how to use numerical modelling for planning was discussed with the conclusion that even emore areas will be calculated. Necessary licenses and servers to do this will be provided by RUPP.

To achieve the transfer from science to implementation, Ms. Nuria Roig, research associate of Build4People Work Package “Sustainable Neighbourhoods”, presented the very first draft of the co-called Build4People Transformation Toolbox. This was followed by a discussion how to integrate the results of the urban climatic map parameters into the system of the toolbox.

Based on the discussions following concrete steps have been agreed upon:

  • Publication of a document on the principals of a climatological oriented planning. This has already been drafted by INKEK, and will soon be translated into Khmer Language and then disseminated. 
  • To calibrate and evaluate the urban climate map of Phnom Penh in regard of the local thermal comfort sensation for Cambodia it was decided that more interviews will be carried out. The participating students showed strong interest to support this approach within their studies.
  • Integration of the topic of urban climate into the Climate Change Master Course at RUPP.
  • Preparation of a workshop bringing together representatives from the International Association of Urban Climatology (IAUC), the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) with representatives of the Ministry of Environment (MOE), the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction (MLMUPC) and the Phnom Penh Capital Hall (PPCH). This workshop shall foster the implementation of urban climate into local planning processes.

To further discuss this strategically relevant topics, there was an immediate follow-up meeting after the Science Workshop on the campus of RUPP. This informal meeting in-between representatives of the Build4People Work Packages also served to discuss how urban climate can be better integrated in the overall planning system of Cambodia.