Water and Air Challenges in the HKH under Climate and Environmental Change: Opportunities using a Transdisciplinary Approach

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This workshop brought together, in a constructive dialogue, experts from different backgrounds in order to identify research needs and best practices in transdisciplinary research in and on the HKH region. Whereas there is a wide agreement on the need of approaching climate change holistically, when it comes to actual transdisciplinary research, disciplinary barriers seems hard to beat. Rather than assessing a general need for transdisciplinarity, this workshop brought together researchers who are working on adaptation and climate change from within different disciplinary fields and use an action and policy-oriented framework for their research. This meeting showcased successful projects and initiatives with a transdisciplinary design and discussed some of the major barriers and gaps to such a holistic research design. The discussions contributed to a better understanding of the vulnerabilities and the potential of integrated water management with a specific attention also to water as a resource for agriculture and to the socio-political and gendered factors shaping access to and control over water. It also discussed the paramount role of water for food security and did so through a holistic lens on the environmental and climatic challenges. The complex interactions between air quality, climate change, economic development, and societal challenges were also addressed.