ASAP East Africa

A systems approach to air pollution in East Africa (ASAP) Project aims to improve air quality management in three East African cities - Adidis Ababa, Kampala and Nairobi.

Leading UK and East African Countries are using a cross disciplinary approach to provide a framework for improved air quality management. 

This timely and responsive programme of activity will enhance local decision-making abilities to improve urban air quality, reduce the effects of air pollution upon human health, and allow for sustainable development to proceed without further deterioration in air quality.

Central to the project’s aims are strengthening research capabilities and technological expertise in East Africa, with local stakeholders and experts involved in the conception, implementation, and uptake of the programme and its outcomes.  


The overarching objectives of this study include studying urbanisation trends and their impact on air quality:

  1. Study urbanisation trends and their impact on air quality.
  2. Develop robust and cost appropriate approaches to monitoring air pollution.
  3. Generate a holistic evidence base on the causes, consequences and levels of air pollution.
  4. Identify and engage with locations and communities, which are most vulnerable.
  5. Identify social, environmental, policy and management measures to tackle air pollution.
  6. Understand the dynamic political economies of focus cities and how these influence urban governance and air quality management.
  7. Raise awareness of air pollution problems and impact policy uptake. 

Research team

  • Abel Weldetinsae Kidane, Ethiopian Public Health Institute
  • Ajit Singh, University of Birmingham
  • Alison Brown, Cardiff University
  • Andrea Mazzeo, University of Birmingham
  • Dr Bernhards Ogutu, Strathmore University
  • Dr Bikila Teklu Wodajo, Addis Ababa Institute of Technology
  • Dr Eloïse Marais, University of Birmingham
  • Prof. Francis Pope, University of Birmingham - Principle Investigator
  • Dr George Ruchathi Mwaniki, African Centre for Technology Studies
  • Hakeem Bakare, University of Birmingham
  • Professor John Bryson, University of Birmingham
  • Dr Lauren Andres, University of Birmingham
  • Dr Mahabubul Bari, Addis Ababa Institute of Technology
  • Dr Mark Henry Rubarenzya, Uganda National Roads Authority
  • Dr Michael Burrow, University of Birmingham
  • Professor Michael Gatari, University of Nairobi
  • Professor Neil Thomas, University of Birmingham
  • Rhiannon Blake, University of Birmingham
  • Dr William Avis, University of Birmingham
  • Winnie Khaemba, African Centre for Technology Studies


  • Andres, L., Bryson, J., Bakare, H., Melgaco Silva Marques, L., Khaemba, W. & Mwaniki, G., (2019) Planning, Temporary Urbanism and Citizen-led Alternative-Substitute Place-Making in the Global South (Accepted/In press) In : Regional Studies.


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Funder/client: Department for International Development 
Timescale: September 2017 - June 2020


John BrysonProject contact: John Bryson