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Indus Basin Initiative
The Upper Indus Basin Network (UIBN) is a voluntary and neutral knowledge and research network of national and international researchers working in the upper reaches of the Indus basin.
At a glance
The UIBN promotes coordination and collaboration to improve understanding of present and future water availability, demand, and hazards, and develop solutions for local and national stakeholders.
Arun Bhakta Shrestha
The UIBN aims to foster coordination in research on climate, cryosphere, water, hazards, adaptation, and vulnerability.
The UIBN supports the Indus Basin Initiative in building resilience to climate change impacts by improving current understanding of climate change, cryosphere, and water resources, and strengthening networks for developing water and hazard management solutions.
Its members come from national departments, governmental and non-governmental organizations, and universities and educational institutions in Afghanistan, China, India, and Pakistan, as well as from ICIMOD and our international partners.
The governance structure of the Regional UIB-N comprises three main components:
The Regional UIBN is governed through a Regional Strategic Committee (RSC) headed by the Chairperson.
The Regional UIBN Annual Meeting (RUAM) is organized once a year, chaired by the chairperson of the RSC.
The Regional UIBN’s governance structure is rooted in the member countries. Each member country has established its own UIBN country chapter.
This document has been drafted as recommended during the Regional UIB-N Workshop held at the ICIMOD headquarters in Kathmandu on 24 and 25 April 2018. Learning from the success in Pakistan, the UIB-N has now been expanded to all the basin countries – Afghanistan, China, India, and Pakistan. This document describes the revised vision, mission, objectives, and governance framework of the network. It includes details on how the Regional UIB-N will function regionally as well as at the country level. It also defines the roles and responsibilities of the members and other operational mechanisms of the network in light of the discussions held during the Regional UIB-N workshop.
The Upper Indus Basin Network (UIB-N) is a voluntary and informal knowledge and research network of national
and international researchers working in the basin. It aims to foster coordination in research related to climate,
cryosphere, water, hazards and vulnerability, and adaptation.
2010: Expert consultation on a long-term programme to share scientific knowledge on the Upper Indus Basin (UIB)
2012: UIB Monitoring Working Group (MWG) formed by national and international partners
2014: Field visit of government, non-government, and international experts to Gilgit-Baltistan leads to the formation of six transboundary working groups (TWGs); UIB MWG renamed as the Upper Indus Basin Network (UIBN)
2017: UIBN begins collaborating with the Indus Forum and co-organizing international events such as the Indus Basin Knowledge Forum (IBKF)
2018: UIBN members decide to expand the network to all riparian countries – Afghanistan, China, India, and Pakistan – through respective country chapters
Jan 2019: Endorsement of a new governance framework with regional and country structure
Jan 2019–present: All four country chapters formed; Regional Strategic Committee meeting being regularly convened; theory of change drafted; proposal for joint research and bilateral projects discussed
The UIBN specializes in pooling technical resources and modelling capacities to undertake policy research. This brings credibility and paves the way for further regional cooperation. Designing joint projects on climate change risks will enable all stakeholders to address the gaps and challenges. The UIBN derives its influence from the collaboration of all upper Indus Basin countries and a range of stakeholders, and the network achieves its goals by adopting a systems approach. By institutionalizing UIBN, linkages between different country chapters can be strengthened and a basin perspective can be presented. The aim should be to transform our level of impact by building relationships – identify silos and build bridges!
Co-coordinator, Pakistan Country Chapter
Over four decades of war in Afghanistan has meant that the country’s academia is isolated and young scholars on water-related issues have had limited opportunities to expand their expertise and knowledge. Being connected to networks like the UIBN has contributed to enhanced knowledge and capacity of professionals in Afghanistan in the field of water and other related areas, such as climate change and disasters. The network has provided an important platform for joint work between riparian countries to tackle the common challenges that we face related to climate change impacts. Regional and sustainable cooperation between the riparian countries is key for the success of the network.
UIB network is set up with the six technical working groups, each to cover an important aspect that is considered intrinsic to better scientific understanding of climate change in UIB through monitoring and modeling.
Technical Working Group leads and members collaborate to strengthen each other's work.