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Socioeconomic benefits of weather and climate services in Pakistan


Islamabad and Multan, Pakistan

Date & Time

02 August 2022 to 04 August 2022

Organizer: ICIMOD, Met Office, Pakistan Meteorological Department, and University of Leeds


About the workshop

In collaboration with the Met Office – the UK’s national meteorological agency, the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD), and the University of Leeds (UoL), we are organising knowledge sharing workshops on the socio-economic benefits of weather and climate information services (WCIS) in Islamabad and Multan in Pakistan.

In March 2021, PMD, UoL and ICIMOD initiated a joint study under the UK Aid-funded Asia Regional Resilience to a Changing Climate (ARRCC) programme to understand the use and evaluate the socio-economic benefits of the agro-met advisories provided by PMD, particularly focusing on cotton and wheat farmers in the Punjab and Sindh provinces where rising temperatures, more frequent flooding and prolonged droughts threaten productivity. The study team will be sharing the key findings of this study with national stakeholders. This will be followed by an interaction workshop for farmers.



  • Share key findings of the study with stakeholders and obtain feedback
  • Receive recommendations for enhancing current and designing future agromet advisories from PMD
  • Discuss the study and its policy relevance
  • Discuss future research needs and implementation


Expected outcomes

The workshop will share the findings of the study, solicit feedback, stimulate discussions on how to design the agromet advisories offered by PMD to be more effective, and identify areas where farmers need support to adopt the advisories. The recommendations of the workshop are expected to influence decision-makers in developing suitable policies at various levels to support farmers in adopting the advisories and benefitting from them.



Participants include key stakeholders of WCISs from government agencies and ministries related to agriculture and the environment including weather and climate information providers, users, research organisations, and progressive farmers from Punjab and Sindh provinces.


Resource persons

PMD: Mahr Sahibzad Khan, Muhammad Amjad and PMD officers from National Agromet Centre

ICIMOD: Mandira Singh Shrestha, Mani Nepal, Vijay Khadgi, Ganesh Bhattarai, Muhammad Ismail, Haris Ayub

UoL: Marta Bruno Soares

Met Office: Daniel Ryan

MNS University of Agriculture, Multan (MNSUAM): Muhammad Ashfaq



The Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) provides comprehensive agricultural meteorological (agromet) advisories at various time scales to farming communities, which covers the general forecast for the coming week, month, and season along with crop-specific suggestions. In 2021, PMD, UoL and ICIMOD initiated a joint study under the UK Aid-funded ARRCC programme. The study aimed at identifying areas where the agromet advisories produced and disseminated by PMD could be improved to increase the uptake and use by those who are most vulnerable to climate hazards and changing conditions. Underpinning this aim is the concept of equity i.e. to produce a useful and usable WCIS considering the different information needed by men and women. To achieve this aim, the research was split into four objectives:

  1. Understand the user landscape i.e. who use PMD services and who do not
  2. Examine farmers’ perceptions of the services provided by PMD in terms of how useful and usable they are
  3. Explore the conditions that enable or constrain the use of WCIS
  4. Determine the impacts, including socio-economic benefits and costs of the services provided

In consultation with PMD, we jointly conducted the study in the Punjab and Sindh provinces, where wheat is grown as a staple food crop and cotton as a cash crop. The study also gathered information on how farmers use WCIS to manage risk-related and other aspects of farming. A total of 612 households were surveyed and 19 focus groups discussions were conducted to understand the use/non-use of the WCIS by households.


Tentative agenda

Time Activity Lead
9:00-9:15 Registration Haris Ayub, ICIMOD
9:15–9:20 Recital of the Holy Quran PMD
9:20–10:00 Opening session

Welcome remarks: Mahr Sahibzad Khan, Director General, PMD

Opening remarks: Daniel Ryan, Met Office (virtual)

Objectives of the workshop, Mandira Singh Shrestha, Programme Coordinator – Climate Services, ICIMOD

Asma Jawad Hashmi, PMD
  Introduction of participants
10:00–10:30 Group photo and tea break
10.30–11.00 PMD agromet services and outreach Dildar Hussain Kazmi, PMD
11:00–11:40 Background of the study and overall study findings

Use of weather and climate services

Socio-economic benefits of using agromet advisories

Marta Bruno Soares, UoL and Mani Nepal, ICIMOD
11:40–13:00 Panel discussion on study findings and relevance for evidence-based decision making

(Four panellists, 8 minutes each followed by moderated discussion)

Asma Jawad Hashmi, PMD

Bilal Iqbal, Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC)

Naveed Iqbal

Aneel Salman

Moderated by  Zaheer Ahmad Babar, PMD

and Muhammad Ashfaq, MNSUAM

13:00–14:30 Lunch
14:30–15:30 Group work on packaging and delivering of agromet information Moderated by

Jehangir Awan, PMD and Mandira Singh Shrestha, ICIMOD

15:30–16:00 Group presentations
16:00–16:30 Closing followed by hi-tea

Mahr Sahibzad Khan, PMD

Muhammad Ismail, ICIMOD

Note: The language of delivery will be in Urdu and English.

Time Activity Lead
09:30-10:00 Registration MNSUAM
10:00–10:05 Recital of the Holy Quran MNSUAM
10:05–10:50 Welcome note – Asif Ali, Vice Chancellor, MNSUAM

Remarks – Mahr Sahibzad Khan, Director General, PMD

Remarks – Mandira Singh Shrestha, Programme Coordinator – Climate Services, ICIMOD

Keynote address – Saqib Ali Ateel, Secretary Agriculture, South Punjab

Muhammad Ashfaq, MNSUAM
  Introduction of participants
10:50–11:15 Group photo and tea break
11:15–11:35 PMD agromet services and benefits to farmers Dildar Hussain Kazmi, PMD
11:35–12:30 Study findings and summary of discussions in Islamabad Muhammad Ashfaq, MNSUAM and Vijay Khadgi, ICIMOD
12:30–13:30 Lunch
13:30–14:30 Farmers panel discussion

Progressive farmers to provide feedback on improving WCIS

Sources of information

Timing, use, and usability of agromet services

Best practices and success stories

Policy support required for improving outreach, understandability, usability, and accuracy

Farmers/ practitioners
14:30–15:00 Discussion Mahr Sahibzad Khan, PMD and Muhammad Ashfaq, MNSUAM

Closing followed by tea

Mahr Sahibzad Khan, PMD

Irfan Baig/Representative from MNS University

Muhammad Ismail, ICIMOD