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Protect the pulse.

The Hindu Kush Himalaya is the pulse of the planet. Being at the top of the world, changes happen here before they happen anywhere else and the beat of this place vibrates across the globe. We are ICIMOD. Together with our partners, we protect the pulse. 

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#HKH2Glasgow: A unified mountain voice

As we enter the second half of the year, we look forward to our participation in a couple of major international engagements: the 26th Conference of Parties (COP 26) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to be held in Glasgow, Scotland, in November; and the 15th Conference of Parties (COP15) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Biodiversity in Kunming, China, in October.

We have been engaging in various COP events and processes for over a decade now, focusing on representing the challenges and aspirations of HKH mountain communities with regards to climate change. This year, we are already working hard to put together meetingsside-events, and a dedicated cryosphere pavilion at COP26 to raise greater awareness about our region and its realities.


The Melamchi flood disaster: Cascading hazard and the need for multihazard risk management

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Promoting ambitious climate action for the Hindu Kush Himalaya

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Call for nomination: ICIMOD Mountain Prize 2021

Prize: USD 2,500
Nomination deadline: 30 September 2021
Result announcement: 11 Dec 2021

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Snow data analysis in the Hindu Kush Himalaya region using R and Google Earth Engine

Application deadline: 10 August 2021

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Proceedings of the HKH Ministerial Mountain Summit

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ICIMOD Annual report 2020

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Featured news/articles


ICIMOD and WWF-Nepal sign agreement to advance conservation and sustainable development in the Hindu Kush Himalaya

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Sharing best practices of sustainable mountain development with Chinese community leaders in the Far Eastern Himalaya

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HKH2Glasgow: Hindu Kush Himalaya countries to raise a unified voice for mountains at COP26

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A newly launched Regional Centre for Capacity Development on Earth observation and data

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MoU signed by Climate Analytics and International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development

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Localizing climate services for resilient tourism development in Chitwan

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Featured videos

Conservation challenges on the roof of the world: Celebrating the IBD                                        

Sir Partha Dasgupta's Keynote address at SANDEE's 41st Research and Training Workshop

#ClimateWeekAP: Green, resilient, and inclusive development in the HKH: Challenges and opportunities

ICIMOD-IFAD webinar on shifting cultivation and Launch of knowledge products

#HKH2Glasgow - Road to UNFCCC COP26: Promoting ambitious climate action for the Hindu Kush Himalaya

Webinar: Women farmers and sustainable mechanization - Episode II: The Bhutan chapter

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Featured dataset

Amphibia and Reptilia of Yunnan

This is a checklist of amphibia and reptilia of Yunnan province compiled from the book: Yang Datong and Rao Dingqi (Eds). 2008. Amphibia and Reptilia of Yunnan. Yunnan Publishing Group Corporation, Yunnan Science and Technology Press.

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Proceedings of the Second Regional Upper Indus Basin Network Annual Meeting

The second Regional Upper Indus Basin Network (UIBN) Annual Meeting (RUAM) convened from 26-27 January 2021 to assess the network’s overall progress, and devise future strategies with focus on regional cooperation. The meeting was attended by the chair of the UIBN network, country chapter coordinators and co-coordinators from the four riparian countries, advisors, leads or co-leads of the Technical Working Groups (TWGs), experts from international organizations, and members from the secretariat (ICIMOD).

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Proceedings of the workshop on resilience marker methodology

The Resilient Mountain Solutions Initiative generates knowledge to assess the resilience of socio-ecological systems by conducting mountain-specific case studies across the Hindu Kush Himalaya. We use a resilience marker methodology that relies on systems thinking to understand the complex interactions and feedbacks of socio-ecological systems.

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Proceedings of the training on identification of potentially dangerous glacial lakes based on remote sensing and geospatial techniques

To enhance knowledge on glacial hazards such as glacial lake outburst floods (GLOFs), the Strengthening Water Resources Management in Afghanistan (SWaRMA) Initiative organized a training on “Identification of potentially dangerous glacial lakes based on remote sensing and geospatial techniques” from 15–19 July 2019.

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Proceedings of the dissemination workshop on SERVIR-HKH Earth observation and geospatial application services in Afghanistan

In October 2020, the Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock (MAIL), Afghanistan got together with ICIMOD to organize a two-day dissemination workshop, “SERVIR-HKH Earth observation and geospatial application services in Afghanistan”, under the SERVIR Hindu Kush Himalaya Initiative (SERVIR-HKH).

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Quantifying the extent of shifting cultivation: An urgent need to revisit and revise landuse and land cover classifications

Present landuse classifications fail to capture the diverse stages of shifting cultivation, particularly the dynamic stages in its fallow phase. This results in such landuse being incorrectly delegated to wasteland and forest classes as well as landcover categories that are not obviously linked to shifting cultivation.

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Shifting cultivation landscapes in transition: Where are the forests? Safeguarding forest cover and ecosystem services while transitioning shifting cultivation to resilient farming systems

In its traditional form, shifting cultivation involves a short cultivation phase followed by a long fallow phase, which allows for regeneration of forests. Transition to settled agricultural systems has been at the expense of regenerating fallows, resulting in shortened fallow cycles, a permanent change in landuse and land cover, and a drastic depletion in forest cover.

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Ensuring seasonal food availability and dietary diversity during and after transition of shifting cultivation systems to settled agriculture

Despite holding the promise of food security, improved nutrition and enhanced incomes, the establishment of terraces and plantations as replacements for shifting cultivation has resulted in large-scale permanent land-use change and the consequent erosion of the diverse resource base that upland communities are dependent on for their food and nutritional needs.

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Supporting Myanmar’s land governance reforms: Approaches for legally recognizing customary land tenure as a driver for development for upland communities practising shifting cultivation

As upland farming systems in Myanmar such as shifting cultivation – functioning under customary land tenurial arrangements – remain outside the statutory definition of farmlands, they are legally perceived as wastelands subject to appropriation under various land-related legislations.

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Transitioning shifting cultivation to resilient farming systems in South and Southeast Asia

Shifting cultivation continues to be viewed as a rudimentary agricultural practice with little economic viability, a major cause of deforestation and environmental degradation, and a hurdle for development of the uplands. This view persists despite a growing body of scientific literature contradicting the perception.

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The Afghan Hindu Kush in 1965: A research expedition of the international hydrological decade

As long ago as 1965, an expedition from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne studied the heat and water balance of a glacier in the Hindu Kush. This was possibly the first attempt to scientifically evaluate what was happening to the glaciers in the Hindu Kush–Karakoram–Himalaya region.

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Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Capability for the Hindu Kush Himalaya (REEECH)

Nearly 370 million people in the HKH region do not have access to electricity, with close to 1.8 billion people relying on traditional, polluting biomass fuels for energy. Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Capability for the Hindu Kush Himalaya (REEECH) is the first centre with a mountain focus that functions as a regional hub and think tank under the Global Network of Regional Sustainable Energy Centres (GN-SEC)...

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Journal articles

Basnet, D; Jianmei, Y; Dorji, T; Qianli, X; Lama, AK; Maowei, Y; Ning, W; Yantao, W; Gurung, K; Rujun, L; Gupta, N; Kanwal, KS; Shaoliang, Y (2021). 'Bird photography tourism, sustainable livelihoods, and biodiversity conservation: A case study from China.' In Mountain Research and Development 41 DOI: 10.1659/MRD-JOURNAL-D-19-00054.1.

Cundill, G; Singh, C; Adger, WN; Safra de Campos, R; Vincent, K; Tebboth, M; Maharjan, A (2021). 'Toward a climate mobilities research agenda: Intersectionality, immobility, and policy responses.' In Global Environmental Change 69: 102315 DOI: 10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2021.102315.

Steiner, JF; Kraaijenbrink, PDA; Immerzeel, WW (2021). 'Distributed melt on a debris-covered glacier: Field observations and melt modeling on the Lirung glacier in the Himalaya.' In Frontiers in Earth Science 9 DOI: 10.3389/feart.2021.678375.

Dhimal, M; Kramer, IM; Phuyal, P; Budhathoki, SS; Hartke, J; Ahrens, B; Kuch, U; Groneberg, DA; Nepal, S; Liu, Q-Y; Huang, C-R; CissÉ, G; Ebi, KL; KlingelhÖfer, D; Müller, R (2021). 'Climate change and its association with the expansion of vectors and vector-borne diseases in the Hindu Kush Himalayan region: A systematic synthesis of the literature.' In Advances in Climate Change Research DOI: 10.1016/j.accre.2021.05.003.

Yang, Y; Ren, G; Li, W; Huang, Z; Lin, AK; Garber, PA; Ma, C; Yi, S; Momberg, F; Gao, Y; Wang, X; Li, G; Behie, A; Xiao, W (2019). 'Identifying transboundary conservation priorities in a biodiversity hotspot of China and Myanmar: Implications for data poor mountainous regions.' In Global Ecology and Conservation 20: e00732 DOI: 10.1016/j.gecco.2019.e00732.

Book/report sections/chapters

Aryal, KP; Chaudhary, RP; Poudel, S (2021) 'Food from farm and forest, a case study from Kailash Sacred Landscape.' In R. Romeo, S. Manuelli, M. Geringer and V. Barchiesi (eds), Mountain farming systems - seeds for the future, 70-72, Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

Joshi, SR; Chettri, N (2021) 'Resilient practices for large cardamom agroecology in Nepal.' In R. Romeo, S. Manuelli, M. Geringer and V. Barchiesi (eds), Mountain farming systems - seeds for the future, 64-66, Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

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