Bhuwan Thapa, a PhD student in the School of Geography and Development, and a graduate research associate at the Udall Center for Studies in Public Policy, both at the University of Arizona, has been awarded a Climate & Society Graduate Fellowship by the Climate Assessment for the Southwest (CLIMAS).
CLIMAS is a Regional Integrated Science and Assessment program run by the University of Arizona with support from the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Operating since 1998, CLIMAS improves the U.S. Southwest region’s ability to respond sufficiently and appropriately to climatic events and climate changes, and promotes participatory, iterative research involving scientists, decision makers, resource users, and other stakeholders. The program has been awarding CLIMAS Fellowships since 2014 and Bhuwan is one of four recipients for 2015.
Bhuwan, a native of Nepal, will conduct use-inspired research on adaptation strategies of farmer-managed irrigation systems in the Gandaki Basin of Nepal. The use-inspired research addresses the needs expressed by farmers, i.e., to help them effectively manage their irrigation system against hydroclimatic and socioeconomic stresses. It focuses on participatory methods and engages stakeholders throughout the research process. As a part of the research, Bhuwan will conduct a participatory vulnerability assessment and compile information on local and appropriate adaptation strategies.
This research will help Bhuwan answer the broader question of how to achieve water security in the agricultural sector through better understanding the hydroclimatic and socioeconomic drivers of change and the adaptive responses of farmers.