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  • published datePublish Date: 2018-03-31
  • submission dateForm Submission Final Date: 2018-05-21
  • Grant TypeGrant Type: Seed/Seedling Grants

Extended deadline: 21 May 2018

Globalization and climate change have an increasing influence on the stability of fragile mountain ecosystems and the livelihoods of mountain people. Mountain and downstream communities are increasingly vulnerable to climate change impacts and are in pressing need of effective adaptation and mitigation measures. The resilience and adaption capacities of communities and ecosystems need to be strengthened through adaptation mechanisms that are built on both indigenous knowledge of autonomous adaptation and strong scientific evidence. Appropriate policies and practices, and innovative livelihood improvement and sustainable natural resource management strategies need to be developed through a strong partnership between scientists, policy makers, and practitioners.

Universities and research centres play a key role in generating, sharing, and disseminating knowledge on climate change and providing evidence for effective climate change impact mitigation policies and practice. They also play a key role in filling in crucial knowledge gaps and infusing technical content into public discourse that can help influence policy makers and public opinion. The Himalayan University Consortium (HUC) was founded in 2007 with a mandate to develop an effective, sustainable network of universities in the HKH, for collaboration with academic, research, and knowledge generating and exchange institutions both within and outside the HKH region for sustainable mountain development. Its founding member, the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICMOD), hosts the HUC Secretariat as part of one of its Regional Programmes – Mountain Knowledge and Action Networks. The Consortium has expanded its network to 47 full members in eight HKH countries and 15 associate members in OECD and other Asian countries (Annex 1). Through initial activities such as Small/Seed Grants, Exchange/Mobility Grants, and ICIMOD PhD/Doctoral Fellowship Programmes, members have increased their ownership and commitment. Nine HUC Thematic Working Groups (TWGs) have been established and initial steps are being taken to build regional collaboration on research and training for sustainable mountain development across the Consortium (Annex 2).

Funding and Duration

Depending on the scope of the proposed activities and the size of partnership, funding ranges from USD 20,000 to USD 35,000 per grant for a duration of 12 to 15 months, starting 15 June 2018. Three to four grants will be awarded.

Selection Criteria

Proposals will be reviewed by an independent panel of climate change and adaptation experts, according to the following criteria.

  • Scientific quality: Validity and relevance of research question, quality of literature review, clarity and appropriateness of methodology for data collection and/or analyses, potential for international peer reviewed publication.
  • Policy relevance: With direct policy implications, proven feasible and sustainable adaptation measures.
  • Strength of partnership: Clearly defiend roles, responsibilities, and contributions of each partner. Proposal based on existing partnership and scope for continuation, evidence of ownership or shared leadership, linkage with HUC TWGs, presence of women as principal investigators in the team, incorporation of Swiss expertise, etc.
  • Interdisciplinary approach: Balance between natural and social sciences, creative use of stakeholder engaging strategies, etc.
  • Potential for upscaling: Replicability and applicability of research outcome or/and adaptation measures in other contexts.
  • Potential for impact and sustainability: Identified impact areas, secured commitment for policy or curriculum uptake by relevant institutions, potential for external funding from government and international agencies.