Poverty and Vulnerability Assessment (PVA)

This page hosts the Poverty and Vulnerability Assessment (PVA) data collected under the Himalayan Climate Change Adaptation Programme (HICAP), which is part of ICIMOD’s Regional Programme on Adaptation to Change. The data is based on surveys conducted with 8,083 households in four river sub-basins – the Koshi in Nepal, the Eastern Brahmaputra in India, the Upper Indus in Pakistan, and the Salween-Mekong in China. The purpose of the survey is to enable a multidimensional identification and assessment of vulnerable households and communities in the Hindu Kush Himalayan region. The data from the assessment will be used in research and strategic planning for adaptation.

The Poverty and Vulnerability Assessment (PVA) is a household level, large-scale assessment of livelihood vulnerability and its determinants, and the adaptive capacities of people in the Hindu Kush Himalayan region. ICIMOD developed this tool over the last decade by adapting and field-testing globally recognized approaches for socioeconomic and livelihood vulnerability assessments.

The PVA tool is modified after the Poverty and Vulnerability Assessment Tool (PVAT), an instrument for collecting all relevant information on poverty and livelihood vulnerability in the mountain context. PVAT was developed under ICIMOD’s ‘Improving Livelihoods and Enhancing Resilience of the Rural Poor in the Hindu Kush Himalayas to Environmental and Socio-economic Changes’ (AdaptHimal) in 2011 and was commissioned in nine districts across Nepal. 

The PVAT was further developed into the Vulnerability and Adaptive Capacity Assessment (VACA) under the Himalayan Climate Change Adaptation Programme (HICAP). The VACA is a research tool for assessing livelihood vulnerability to environmental and socioeconomic change as well as adaptive capacity in the mountain context. 

With each revision, the PVA has been fine-tuned to incorporate mountain-specific elements. A more comprehensive Multi-dimensional Livelihood Vulnerability Index (MLVI) for survey and analysis of the results is currently being developed. The MLVI is designed to measure multidimensional livelihood vulnerability to change in the Hindu Kush Himalayas in order to develop targeted policies and programmes.

Results from the PVA are being used to map target areas and groups for interventions, and will serve as a baseline for further in-depth studies. In its current form, the PVA is being used to collect data from Bhutan, India and Myanmar under ‘Improving Livelihoods and Enhancing Resilience of the Rural Poor in the Hindu Kush Himalayas to Environmental and Socioeconomic Changes’ (AdaptHimal) and ‘Rural Livelihoods and Climate Change Adaptation in the Himalayas’ (Himalica). 

Geographical regions and sample size covered in PVA