Mainstreaming a Decade's Experiences in Watershed Management to Meet the Challenges of Environmental Change in the Hindu Kush-Himalayas

Providoli, Isabelle; Sthapit, Keshar Man; Dhakal, Madhav; Sharma, Eklabya (2011). Mainstreaming a Decade's Experiences in Watershed Management to Meet the Challenges of Environmental Change in the Hindu Kush-Himalayas. In: Vaughn, Jeremy (ed.) Watersheds: Management, Restoration and Environmental Impact (pp. 305-318). New York: Nova Science Publishers

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Like other mountain areas in the world, the Hindu Kush-Himalayan (HKH) region is particularly vulnerable to climate change. Ongoing climate change processes are projected to have a high impact on the HKH region, and accelerated warming has been reported in the Himalayas. These climate change impacts will be superimposed on a variety of other environmental and social stresses, adding to the complexity of the issues. The sustainable use of natural resources is crucial to the long-term stability of the fragile mountain ecosystems in the HKH and to sustain the socio-ecological resilience that forms the basis of sustainable livelihoods in the region. In order to be prepared for these challenges, it is important to take stock of previous research. The ‘People and Resource Dynamics Project’ (PARDYP), implemented by International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), provides a variety of participatory options for sustainable land management in the HKH region. The PARDYD project was a research for development project that operated in five middle mountain watersheds across the HKH – two in Nepal and one each in China, India, and Pakistan. The project ran from 1996 to 2006 and focused on addressing the marginalisation of mountain farmers, the use and availability of water, issues relating to land and forest degradation and declining soil fertility, the speed of regeneration of degraded land, and the ability of the natural environment to support the growing needs of the region’s increasing population. A key learning from the project was that the opinion of land users is crucial to the acceptance (and, therefore, successful application) of new technologies and approaches. A major challenge at the end of every project is to promote knowledge sharing and encourage the cross-fertilization of ideas (e.g., in the case of PARDYP, with other middle mountain inhabitants and practitioners in the region) and to share lessons learned with a wider audience. This paper will highlight how the PARDYP findings, including ways of addressing soil fertility and water scarcity, have been mainstreamed in the HKH region through capacity building (international, regional, and national training courses), networking, and the provision of backstopping services. In addition, in view of the challenges in watershed management in the HKH connected to environmental change, the lessons learned from the PARDYP are now being used by ICMOD to define and package climate change proof technology options to address climate change adaptation.

Item Type:

Book Section (Book Chapter)


08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography > Geographies of Sustainability
10 Strategic Research Centers > Centre for Development and Environment (CDE)

UniBE Contributor:

Providoli, Isabelle


300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 330 Economics




Nova Science Publishers




Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 14:25

Last Modified:

11 May 2015 15:40

URI: (FactScience: 214692)

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