Yale Himalaya Initiative

environment | livelihood | culture

Amanda Mei’s blog

Yale Himalaya Initiative Director Alark Saxena recognized by 2018 Inspiring Yale Award

Program Director Alark Saxena has been accorded the 2018 Inspiring Yale Award. The Graduate and Professional Student Senate recognized Alark for his interdisciplinary work as associate research scientist and lecturer at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. Joined by faculty representatives of the 13 graduate and professional schools at Yale, Alark received the award on April 11 at a well-attended event in Lei Zhang Auditorium of the School of Management.

Prajjwal Panday on hydro-climatology of the Hindu-Kush Himalayan region

Over the past decade, Prajjwal Panday has researched the complex interactions between land, water, human, and climate systems in the Hindu-Kush Himalayas (HKH). The region, which ranges across the river basins of the Ganges, Brahmaputra, Mekong, and Yellow Rivers, pose a challenge for researchers to model effects of climate change on hydrology. On April 10, Panday gave a lecture as part of the YHI Spring 2018 Series drawing from his past and ongoing research.

Narayan Gyawali on flood resilience in development practice with LWR and YHI

Representing the Lutheran World Relief (LWR), Narayan Gyawali has worked with communities in India and Nepal to develop resilience to flooding-related disasters. Although the communities remain vulnerable and marginalized in political systems of the two nations, projects such as the Trans-boundary Resilience Project (TBR) are contributing to increased resilience and livelihoods of the local areas. Along with Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies graduate students Zach Garcia and Camilo Huneeus-Guzman, Narayan presented his development work for the YHI Spring 2018 series.

YHI joins Himalayan Universities Consortium

By: Amanda Mei

The Yale Himalaya Initiative is now an associate member of the Himalayan Universities Consortium (HUC) under the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD). At the annual meeting of HUC on November 1, the consortium enabled YHI to join its research network. Induction of YHI in HUC has charted a path for similar university initiatives around the world to join the consortium.

Graduate student panel: Illegal timber extraction, creation of national forest inventory, bird conservation, and public health in Bhutan and India

Representing four different approaches to understanding the coupled human-environment systems of the Himalayas, graduate students Anwesha Dutta, Younten Phuntsho, Indra Acharja, and Catherine Schuetze joined the Yale Himalaya Initiative for a panel discussion on November 14. Anwesha Dutta spoke about the political economy of illegal timber extraction in Assam, India. Youngten Phuntsho discussed his work on the national forest inventory of Bhutan. Indra Acharja addressed bird conservation by the Royal Society for the Protection of Nature in Bhutan. Lastly, Catherine Schuetze overviewed the One Health policy for human, animal, and environmental health in Bhutan.

Dekila Chungyalpa on cultivating conservation and community through religion in the Himalayas

Conservationist Dekila Chungyalpa mobilizes communities to work on environmental projects in the Himalayas—with the help of religious leaders. Since Dekila began working towards inter-linking conservation and religion, she has become a proponent of cross-boundary partnerships between conservationists and religious institutions. On November 7, as part of the Yale Himalaya Initiative’s Fall 2017 seminar series, Dekila gave a lecture entitled “Cultivating Conservation and Community: Eco-Monastic Leadership in the Himalayas.”

Lhakpa Sherpa: story of the first and most successful woman climber of Mount Everest

Hosted by the Himalayan Students Association at Yale and supported by the Yale Himalaya Initiative, mountain climber Lhakpa Sherpa joined us for a reception and discussion of her life achievements. Lhakpa is the first Nepalese woman to successfully summit Mount Everest in the year 2000. She has since summited the 8,848-meter-high mountain eight times, more than any other woman in the world. Lhakpa along with her two daughters and son visited Yale for the first time on October 25. 

Pasang Sherpa on climate change in Humla, Nepal

By: Amanda Mei

Pasang Yangjee Sherpa, an anthropologist from Nepal, joined the Yale Himalaya Initiative Tuesday evening for a discussion about climate change in her country. Interested in locals’ knowledge of and responses to the changing climate, Sherpa spoke about her research in the Humla district, as well as her previous work in the Everest district of Solukhumbu. She maintains a personal and professional interest in the region where “climate change in its multiple forms is still an everyday lived reality.”

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