Building youth capacity in geospatial technology

As a knowledge and learning centre, ICIMOD recognizes the role of information in improving the understanding of environmental and social changes and guiding policies and programmes in the Hindu Kush Himalayan region.

To support the generation, uptake, and use of information on the Hindu Kush Himalayas, the Mountain Environment Regional Information System (MENRIS) Regional Programme at ICIMOD builds capacity for the application of GIS and earth observation data and technologies in the region. Efforts in this regard have included customized training in different thematic areas for policy makers and professionals, as well as youth programmes and internships.

In August 2014 two students from Sherubtse College, who had interned with the NASA DEVELOP internship programme at ICIMOD, received first and second prizes for Best Student Presentation in the Second Annual Research Symposium and Environmental Fair organized by the Bhutan Ecological Society. First prize was awarded to Tenzin for his presentation on ‘The impact of weather abnormalities on the yield of rice: A case study of Paro, Dzongkhag, Bhutan’. Kezang Gaden’s presentation on ‘Geospatial analysis of agricultural land use suitability in Bhutan’ was awarded second prize.

The Royal University of Bhutan and Sherubtse College acknowledged ICIMOD’s support in developing the students’ research capabilities. The DEVELOP Programme at ICIMOD is organized under the SERVIR-Himalaya Initiative, which is supported by USAID and NASA. Students from Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, and Pakistan have participated in the internship programme.