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International conference on Addressing Poverty and Vulnerability in the Hindu Kush Himalayas



International conference on

Addressing Poverty and Vulnerability in the Hindu Kush Himalayas

Forging regional partnerships to enable
transformative change  

Kathmandu, Nepal

1–4 December 2013

Poverty eradication remains one of the greatest challenges facing the world today and is a prerequisite for sustainable development. However, despite global poverty eradication efforts, over 1 billion people – one in five people on this planet –  live in extreme poverty. One in seven is undernourished, of which a significant proportion are in Asia.

In the mountainous regions of the Hindu Kush Himalayas (HKH), the poverty rate is on average 5% higher than the rate for the countries as a whole. The determinants of poverty also differ considerably. In particular, parameters such as lower access to basic amenities, poor physical access, and higher dependency rates are more prominent in the mountains.

Mountain communities have a high degree of self-reliance and a rich tradition of practices to avert risks. However, increasing uncertainties, inadequate and insecure access to resources, technology and finance, a rapidly degrading natural resource base, and insufficient integration into value chains and markets severely compromise their capacities to effectively deal with change and take advantage of emerging opportunities to pull themselves out of poverty.

There is an urgent need to support the adaptation abilities of vulnerable mountain households, communities, and ecosystems and enhance their resilience focusing specifically on the challenges confronting mountain women and disadvantaged groups. Mountain specific policies and development interventions to address the needs of the people in the Hindu Kush Himalayan region are still inadequate, primarily because of insufficient knowledge.

The Conference aims to compile updated knowledge on the contours of poverty and enablers of a sustainable development approach for the HKH and thereby, provide inputs specific to the mountain context that can contribute to the formulation of the Post-2015 Development Agenda. The Conference also proposes to set the tone for forging and strengthening regional partnerships for sustainable mountain development.

© 2008 – 2013

Marketplace for development agencies and projects

A marketplace will be organized during the Conference to provide a forum and opportunity to development agencies and projects to showcase their ongoing (or completed) programmes and projects implemented in the Hindu Kush Himalayan region. The mode of presentation in the marketplace will be through posters, displays, or audio-visuals. The programme/project has to address poverty and vulnerability reduction in the HKH and must have a focus on at least two or three sub-themes of the Conference.

The themes are:

  • ·        Quantitative Approaches for Effective Targeting of Poverty and Vulnerability
  • ·        Challenges in Inclusive Development (Gender, Indigenous Communities and Marginalized Groups)
  • ·        Migration and Remittances
  • ·        Climate Change Adaptation
  • ·        Mountain Goods and Services
  • ·        Inclusive Economic Development

Preference will be given to those programmes/projects that highlight community innovations and approaches and have been/or are under the process of scaling up. The programmes/projects should showcase inclusive development, in particular, gender inclusiveness and should be good practices of inclusive economic development. A maximum of 20 institutions/programmes/projects will be selected for exhibiting their material in the marketplace.


Development agencies/projects should submit a one page write-up highlighting the programme/project achievements, ensuring that indications of how the project/programme involves community innovations, gender inclusiveness, and inclusive economic development are adequately highlighted. Young professionals from the development agencies/projects closely involved in the implementation will be given preference for presentations at the Marketplace. It is expected that the participants in the Marketplace will cover their own costs to attend the Conference.


Please send your abstracts to [email protected] latest by 20 October 2013.


Selected development agencies and projects will be informed of their selection by 1 November. The Marketplace is only open to nationals/projects from countries in the HKH region.


Special poster session for young professionals


International conference on

Addressing Poverty and Vulnerability in the Hindu Kush Himalayas

Forging regional partnerships to enable 

transformative change
Kathmandu, Nepal

1–4 December 2013


Special poster session for young professionals

A special session devoted to showcasing cutting edge research and innovative development approaches will be organized during the last day of the Conference. The aim of this special session is to provide a forum to young professionals from the region to showcase research findings on the main sub-themes of the Conference.


The themes are:

  • Quantitative Approaches for Effective Targeting of Poverty and Vulnerability
  • Challenges in Inclusive Development (Gender, Indigenous Communities and Marginalized Groups)
  • Migration and Remittances
  • Climate Change Adaptation
  • Mountain Goods and Services
  • Inclusive Economic Development


Young professionals (up to 35 years old) are encouraged to submit a 300 word abstract highlighting their research findings in any of the themes listed above in addition to a visual outline of the poster. The research work should highlight issues/concerns, or document innovative approaches that address critical issues within the particular sub-theme, and thus contribute to the deliberation on the sub-themes during the Conference. A total of approximately 24 posters will be selected for presentation covering all the eight countries of theHindu Kush Himalayas. Selected poster presenters will be provided support to attend the Conference.



Please send your abstracts and visual outline of the poster to [email protected] latest by 20 October 2013


Selected young professionals will be informed of their selection by the end of 1 November. The poster session is only open to the young professionals from countries in the HKH region.



(The announcement has been published for wide dissemination to attract prospective  participants at the marketplace as requested by ICIMOD.The announcement has been taken from the link:http://www.icimod.org/?q=11269)

Seminar on how does the importance of different species change when economists consider gender concerns?(Gender Concerns When Noah Prioritizes Biodiversity)Speaker David W.Martin PhD,Professor of Economics,Davidson College,Davidson,USA

A seminar was held on how does the importance of different species change when economists consider gender concerns?(Gender Concerns When Noah Prioritizes Biodiversity) in Dhaka University,Dhaka,Bangladesh  on 25 May 2013.The speaker of the seminar was David W.Martin PhD,Professor of Economics,Davidson College,Davidson,USA who is also a Fulbright-Nehru Research Scholar at Institute of Economic Growth,University of Delhi,Delhi,India.

The seminar was jointly organized by The Zoological Society of Bangladesh(ZSB) and The Department of Zoology,Dhaka University,Dhaka,Bangladesh.The seminar was chaired by Dr.Manjur A.Chowdhury,President,ZSB and it was graced by Mr.Sayed Marghub Murshed,former Secretary of the Government of Bangladesh as the chief guest.They presented valuable speech citing various aspects of biodiversity.The seminar began by the welcome address of Professor Dr.M.A.Bashar.General Secretary,ZSB ,Dr.M.Niamul Naser introduced the speaker, David W.Martin PhD,Professor of Economics,Davidson College,Davidson,USA.Vote of thanks was offered by Dr.Moksed Ali Howlader,Chairman,Department of Zoology,Dhaka University.

The abstract of the seminar has been presented below for the information of interested persons.

Because the financial commitments to preserve biodiversity fall short of what is needed,the elements of biodiversity must be prioritized so that limited funds can be used most effectively.The key issue I address here is the weaknesses of species prioritization mechanisms with respect to gender concerns. I begin by defining biodiversity,gender,and economic development.Finally,I conclude by demonstrating that the net impacts of those biases could lead to either a deflation or an inflation of the ranking for species valued by women and by discussing the implications of that complexity.


Raising gender on the global development agenda:News taken from UN WOMEN Posted on March 28 2012

Sustainable development will not be achieved without the full participation of women. As government officials met in March to prepare for Rio +20, the upcoming United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, a special dialogue was hosted by UN Women, with the Women’s Major Group – a formal group representing women’s priorities in sustainable development – supported by the Governments of Brazil and Switzerland.

Talks focused on better integrating gender equality into the international development agenda beyond 2015 (the scheduled term-end for the Milenium Development Goals or MDGs) – and into the Sustainable Development Goals, which were recently proposed by the Government of Colombia as a framework to be adopted at Rio +20.

Four key principles were agreed on as critical to the upcoming global development agenda:

Equality: the goals need to be framed from an equality perspective and address biases and discrimination based on gender, class, race, ethnicity, among other factors in order to reach those that need it the most.

Holistic and integrated: the goals need to build on the synergies across different sectors and thematic areas, and be able to respond to the global and regional challenges of today. This requires strong multi-sectoral approaches and forms of collaboration among actors in the social, economic and environment fields.

Participatory and inclusive: the goals need to emerge from strong participation and ownership at all levels: local, national, regional and global levels. Only when the process is in the hands of the people—both women and men—and their decision-makers, will there be true ownership and accountability for the required progress and results. Extensive consultations need to be held with key stakeholder groups, including the major groups of Rio+20.

Implementation: the goals need to be aligned with existing declarations and normative frameworks. Focus needs to be placed on strong and effective mechanisms for financing, implementation, monitoring and evaluation to enable sustainable results.

“Both the SDGs and the post 2015 development agenda have a common vision: to set objectives that will make a difference to people’s lives and the world we live in,” said UN Women’s Director for Policy, Saraswathi Menon,in her speech at the event “Both the process of identification of the goals and the process of their attainment need to be inclusive. If not, they will not be transformational or make a difference to people’s lives.”

Panelists represented a wide range of UN agencies, government representatives and NGOs from around the world, from the UNDP to the Development Alternatives with Women for New Era (DAWN). They stressed that women’s daily decisions are significantly impacting sustainable development.

Many are often well-aware of the issues but don’t know what to do about them, and need support, noted Ms. Menon. She recalled a meeting with rural women in Ghana who struggled to make a living by informally trading smoked fish. “In response to a question on priorities that they would set for global policy makers, they mentioned clean oceans and a fishery sector that will sustain future generations for a very long time,” she said. “Women recognize the importance of sustainability through their daily lives.”

Another of the event’s key conclusions was the need for the developments goals and agendas to be combined in one process, rather than parallel streams. Many speakers also pointed to the need to build on experience with the Millenium Development Goals, such as the way in which successes of MDG3 on gender equality and women’s empowerment have had a “multiplier effect” on results related to the other seven goals.

An informal working group was launched at the end of the meeting to continue to ensure that a gender perspective continues to be placed high on the global development agenda, particularly at Rio +20, in June 2012.