Who we are


Over the last four decades, ICIMOD has cemented its role in the region. It has built on its visionary founding mandate to facilitate exchange and learning on regional and transboundary mountain issues. The confidence, recognition, and credibility that we have cultivated amongst our eight RMCs, as well as international partners over almost forty years, is a testament to the efforts of our founders, governors, regional partners, staff, and funders.

Now established as a leading regional and intergovernmental knowledge and learning centre, we serve our eight RMCs – Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, India, Nepal, Myanmar, and Pakistan – working regionally for the benefit of the countries and communities of the HKH. We maintain our non-political and neutral status and respect the concerns of our RMCs. As an impartial convenor and coordinator across the region we value our role on significant technical matters as they arise from research and evidence and as reinforced by the HKH Call to Action.

In our convening and coordinating role, we work to harness the collective strengths of our RMCs to enhance regional and international cooperation to address regional and transboundary issues that are largely environmental in nature and which have major socio-economic implications for millions of people – such as climate change, biodiversity loss and ecosystem degradation, water risk, and air pollution – all of which can disrupt trade, affect energy and food security, trigger dislocation, give rise to security issues, and cause loss of life and livelihood. We call this regional cooperation and collaboration effort, ICIMOD working with our eight RMCs, the ‘power of 8’ or ICIMOD8

Our work supporting RMCs to cope with climate and environmental challenges provides ICIMOD with an opportunity, through knowledge collaboration, to build mutual trust and confidence among member countries, reduce cross-border tensions, enhance regional cooperation, and strengthen the socio-economic security of the region.


A leader in sustainable mountain development, we are a knowledge and innovation hub, supporting and enabling regional transboundary cooperation. We are ICIMOD. We harness the Power of Eight. The Power of 8 Hindu Kush Himalayan Regional Member Countries to leverage regional and international cooperation to deliver climate and environment action in the region.


Moving to 2030, ICIMOD8 holds a pivotal role in supporting our eight RMCs to tackle the multiple challenges of climate, environmental, and socio-economic change. We have the mandate for addressing these issues, many of which can only be fully resolved through coordinated regional responses and collective (multi-country) action. The commitments enshrined in the HKH Call to Action are evidence of regional demand to engage in such cooperative and collaborative action.

These commitments, coupled with multiple other international and regional policy obligations to 2030, and the rapidly increasing magnitude and complexity of regional and transboundary challenges that present differently across the diverse countries of the HKH, urgently require ICIMOD to scale up the quantity and quality of its contributions, as never before.

To deliver on this, we need to urgently trigger and support action on science, policy, and practice – especially on issues common to the HKH region and transboundary in nature. The Strategy 2030 will therefore commit us to build further on ICIMOD’s comparative advantage as a regional organisation, working together with our RMCs in taking this forward. As part of this process, we will reinforce and build up our core values, as well as our key areas of strength, including:

1. Delivering information on key trends, events, and risks, across the HKH, as well as situational analyses and syntheses of research and evidence. This will require more rapid and responsive information services as well as moving from diagnostics to building an understanding of future implications using new approaches and tools, enhanced regional and international exchange, and coordination.

2. Identifying, investigating, and testing proven and actionable solutions through a greater focus on scaling readiness and exchange of learning amongst our RMCs. If these solutions are to trigger action to reduce regional and transboundary risks, they need to be applied collectively across several RMCs and be sufficiently credible to support the design of regional investments.

3. Supporting policy and decision-makers through policy and scenario analysis, decision support systems, inputs to regional and international agreements, and support to RMCs on monitoring and reporting against associated targets, as well as engagement in various policy and institutional processes.

4. Developing skills and capabilities, especially focused on facilitating knowledge transfer across and between RMCs. This will include building on the significant potential to learn from each other, as well as facilitating skills transfer and exchange between the HKH and other regions, recognizing there is an equal need for short-term skills development, and integrating such issues into curricula.


To make this happen, we will commit to deeper engagements across the region, as well as internationally, through more strategic, focused, and transformational knowledge and scaling partnerships.


Our core values

These values are an expression of our culture and are central to the guiding beliefs and principles of our work and behaviour. Our core values will lie at the heart of ICIMOD operations and delivery. They will underpin everything we do and frame how we work with our partners. They reflect our founding intentions and the balances we seek to hold, while equipping ourselves for the future. These core values are:


We practice honesty, respect, and consistency. We ‘do no harm’ or, where unavoidable, minimize harm to climate, environment, and people. We are impartial in our research, findings, partnerships, staffing, and interactions. We have zero tolerance for impropriety.


We demonstrate the value of diversity throughout our operations. We bring various perspectives in our evidence-building, decision-making, and production. We ensure representation and seek opportunities for diverse voices to be heard.


We are politically impartial and respect the sovereignty of our member countries. Organizationally, we play the roles of convenor, facilitator, organizer, or host. As individuals, we seek to dismantle our own biases to embrace neutral approaches.


We promote open sharing and exchange of information. We support open partnerships where risk taking is viewed as mutual. We seek open management where all staff are open to new ideas. We foster a culture of open learning, from failure and success.


We ensure our priorities are driven by RMC needs while also using evidence to raise awareness of key trends, risks, and opportunities. We seek to respect our partnerships through responsiveness. We aim for our work to be useful.


We collectively strive for the maximum uptake of our knowledge and judge our work on visible and measurable impact rather than effort. We embrace innovation, encourage creativity, and seek out the most effective partnerships for science, scaling, and outreach.