Investing in People and Learning to Foster a Climate Resilient and Green Transition

Climate Change Adaptation MOOC Reached Thousands of Learners

02 February 2018 | Online

On January 31st, 2018, UN CC:e-Learn’s first Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on National Adaptation Plans: Building Climate Resilience into Agriculture came to an end. The MOOC raised awareness and built the capacities of a wide range of interested stakeholders in climate change adaptation planning, specifically for the agriculture sectors.

Adapting the agriculture sectors to climate change is a vital challenge for most of the worlds’ developing economies. To cover modules from introduction to climate change adaptation, agriculture and food security, to international legal frameworks, impacts and risks assessments, action prioritization and addressing issues of governance and finance, the MOOC team leveraged knowledge from more than 40 experts and practitioners in this field.

The MOOC was well received by learners across the globe. Each week of the course was structured around a thematic module, presented through a series of lecture videos, delivered by the same anchor Aamena Ahmad, complemented by expert interviews, lecture notes, video episodes, additional resources, graded and ungraded exercises and polls.


  • Over 12,000 registrations
  • Over 9,600 learners from 191 countries enrolled
  • Over 4,700 marked at least one activity as complete
  • Over 1,060 certificates issued
  • Over 33,000 weekly forum discussions were posted

From its content development to assessment methodology and learning environment, this product was unique. Two elements stand out – the weekly video episodes unravelling the personal stories of people involved in agriculture adaptation activities in two countries, Kenya and the Philippines; and the peer assessment project on adaptation action in agriculture.

As of February 2nd, anybody can access the course in archive mode on the UN CC:e-Learn platform and can also to register for the NAP-Ag Interactive Forum on DGroups to continue their learning and exchange of ideas on the topic. Furthermore, all lecture notes and videos will be shared on FAO NAP-Ag and UNDP NAP-Ag. Some lecture notes will also be folded into future knowledge products on adaptation planning.

The course was jointly developed by the United Nations Institute of Training and Research (UNITAR), Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and funded by the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Society, Germany (BMUB) as part of the National Adaptation Plans (NAP-Ag) Programme.

About UNDP

UNDP works in nearly 170 countries and territories, helping to achieve the eradication of poverty, and the reduction of inequalities and exclusion. UNDP helps countries to develop policies, leadership skills, partnering abilities, institutional capabilities and build resilience in order to sustain development results. Together with partners, UNDP supports climate change risk management in the context of agriculture and food security, water resources, coastal zone development, public health, and climate change-related disaster risks.  

About FAO Climate

Since 1945, FAO has been the lead agency fighting for the world without hunger. Achieving food security for all is at the heart of FAO's efforts to ensure people have regular access to enough high-quality food to lead active, healthy lives. FAO is a source of technical knowledge and information on food security and agriculture and provides a forum to its 194 Member Nations to discuss these issues. FAO considers climate change a top-line corporate priority and focuses its work on enhancing institutional and technical capacities of Member Nations and improving integration of food security, agriculture, forestry and fisheries within the international climate agenda. Through its climate change portfolio of over 300 projects worldwide, FAO is supporting countries to both mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate change as an integral part of the 2030 agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals.

About BMUB

The German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB), through its International Climate Initiative (IKI), funds the NAP-Ag Programme which supports 11 countries across Africa, Asia and Latin America.

Since 2008, IKI has been financing climate and biodiversity projects in developing and newly industrialising countries, as well as in countries in transition. The IKI is a key element of Germany’s climate financing and the funding commitments in the framework of the Convention on Biological Diversity. The Initiative places a clear emphasis on climate change mitigation, adaption to the impacts of climate change and the protection of biological diversity.


UNITAR is a training arm of the United Nations System, it provides training and capacity development activities. UNITAR’s Green Development and Climate Change Programme (GCP) develops methodologies, executes training, supports learning strategies, and facilitates knowledge-sharing with the goal to strengthen capacities in developing countries to implement the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and to advance a green, low emission and climate resilient transition.

About UN CC:Learn

UN CC:Learn is a partnership of more than 30 multilateral organizations supporting countries to design and implement systematic, recurrent and results-oriented climate change learning. At the global level, the partnership supports knowledge-sharing, promotes the development of common climate change learning materials, and coordinates learning interventions through a collaboration of UN agencies and other partners. At the national level, UN CC:Learn supports countries in developing and implementing national climate change learning strategies. Through its engagement at the national and global levels, UN CC:Learn contributes to the implementation of Article 6 of the UNFCCC on training, education and public awareness-raising, and the 2012-2020 Doha Work Programme. Funding for UN CC:Learn is provided by the Swiss Government and UN partners. The Secretariat for UN CC:Learn is hosted by the UN Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR).