HUC Academy 2019

The Himalayan University Consortium (HUC) – an initiative under the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development’s (ICIMOD) Mountain Knowledge and Action Networks (MKAN) Regional Programme – provides a platform to enhance collaboration among universities in the Hindu Kush Himalayan (HKH) region and promote centres of excellence on key topics relevant to the region. The aim is to foster research and learning by building a dynamic mountain knowledge partnership among universities, ICIMOD, and regional member country partners to promote research and learning.  This network engages students and  professionals capable of undertaking high-quality research, education, teaching, and knowledge dissemination in service of a mountain-specific, sustainable, fair, and inclusive development for HKH communities and adjoining mountainous areas.

The HUC Academy is the Consortium’s flagship annual programme that provides opportunities for young researchers to engage in cross-disciplinary scholarship. It aims to foster a new generation of transformational leaders committed to mountain research, capable of producing consequential knowledge, innovate policies, and environmentally responsible business practices to address mountain challenges in the HKH from transboundary perspectives. The four signature features of the HUC Academy are mountain focus, inter- and trans-disciplinarity, field research, and leadership. 

Transformative change requires targeting the root causes that result in social, economic, political, and environmental problems and inequities. It is mainly accompanied by changes in economic structures and relations to enhance productivity in an environmentally sound manner and ensure equitable distribution of its benefits. The HUC Academy 2019 – under the theme “Harnessing economic opportunities for transformative change in the Hindu Kush Himalaya” – will take place in Kathmandu from 23 September to 2 October 2019. The programme aims to improve the knowledge of students and early-career professionals in identifying and analysing emerging economic opportunities and their relevance to transformative change in the HKH.

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ICIMOD Travel Grant to August 2019 Cryosphere Forum

This Travel Grant call is for attendees to ICIMOD’s upcoming International Forum on Cryosphere and Society: The Voice of the Hindu Kush Himalaya, to be held from 28 to 30 August 2019 in Kathmandu, Nepal. It will serve as a platform for discussions on the emerging and evolving topic of the cryosphere’s contributions, its relevance in the HKH context, the research developing in the space, and pathways towards increasing the resilience of HKH communities.

Following the very positive reception of The Hindu Kush Himalaya Assessment: Mountains, Climate Change, Sustainability and People, published in February 2019, media coverage revealed widespread international interest in the state and fate of the cryosphere in the HKH region. In this forum, we intend to build on the key findings and recommendations of the Cryosphere Chapter (Chapter 7) of the HKH Assessment, address how they are related to the cryosphere's contributions, and assess their sustainability in the region.

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ICIMOD GMBA PhD Fellowship Call for Applications

Mountain Biodiversity and the Sustainable Development Goals: Knowledge for Synergistic Action (GMBA), will contribute to the development of tools and guide progress towards ecologically sustainable development in the mountains. It is the first mountain-specific comparative assessment of interactions among SDG targets based on an analysis of the status and trends in biodiversity, ecosystem services, human wellbeing, and their direct (or indirect) drivers. It will focus on developing a better understanding of the specific challenges associated with the sustainable management and conservation of mountain biodiversity (SDG 15.4) in the context of competing development goals, limited resources, and complex governance structures. This assessment will be undertaken across global, national, and sub-national scales from mountain systems to communities, and the research outcomes disseminated to relevant stakeholders for uptake into synergistic sustainable development strategies. 

This collaborative research project will be executed by experienced partners in Bolivia, Nepal, Switzerland, and Tanzania using globally available data; a literature review; an online survey of more than1,000 mountain ecosystems involving hundreds of experts in hundreds of mountain ranges worldwide; and local field surveys to collect data on the biodiversity–ecosystem services–human wellbeing nexus across scales. 

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ICIMOD SustaIndus PhD Fellowship 2019 Call for Application

The SustaIndus PhD Fellowship is part of SustaIndus – a project targeting a specific climate change hotspot: the Indus River basin. The project contributes to science that supports Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and sustainable water management in the transboundary basin. The fellow will be enrolled at Utrecht University, the Netherlands, and based in the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), Kathmandu, Nepal. SustaIndus is a four-year international collaborative research project, which was started in 2019 by a consortium of Utrecht University, Wageningen University and Research, ICIMOD, Pakistan Agricultural Research Council, Leadership for Environment and Development (LEAD) Pakistan, and Climate Adaptation Services (Netherlands). The project will develop a modelling toolkit and pathways that contribute to SDGs 2, 6, and 7 (related to food, water, and energy, respectively) in the transboundary Indus River basin. 

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SDC IHCAP HUC Spring Training March 2019


Call for Applications

Regional Training on Springshed Management for Socio-Ecological Resilience in the Hindu Kush Himalayas

Date: 24 March–6 April 2019 | Venue: Kathmandu and Godavari, Nepal

Application deadline: 10 February 2019


Springs are the main source of water for millions of people and ecosystems in the Hindu Kush Himalayan (HKH) landscapes that span eight countries – Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, India, Myanmar, Nepal, and Pakistan. Springs play an important role in the daily lives of thousands of rural and urban communities in the hills and mountains of the HKH. 

However, in many places, once-reliable springs are drying up or their discharge is reducing, presenting rural communities, women in particular, with new challenges. There is also growing concern about the quality of spring water due to contamination from different sources – geogenic and anthropogenic.

HUC is organizing this regional training on Springshed Management with the support from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) through its Indian Himalayas Climate Adaptation Programme (IHCAP) under the Global Programme Climate Change and Environment (GPCCE).

Expected participants include early and mid-career faculty of HUC member institutions. Preference will be given to faculty specializing in geo-sciences and social sciences who already teach a course or module on water resources and their management. Practitioners and local government officials who have experience in water resource management are also encouraged to apply.

More details about the call and a detail application procedure is available at

Should you have any queries regarding the application procedure, please write to

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