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Role of Policy and Institutions in Local Adaptation to Climate Change Case studies on responses to too much and too little water in the Hindu Kush Himalayas

The research question that the study addresses is: How do political processes hinder or promote the adoption of sustainable and equitable adaptation strategies to water-related stress and hazards in the context of climate change in India, Pakistan, Nepal, and China? By assessing the ways that policy impacts on local people’s ability to adapt, the studies aim to provide lessons for policy makers in the four countries studied.

The study focuses on four thematic issues: small-scale water management and the role of local institutions; agro-forestry diversification and intensification; mitigation infrastructure measures, including embankments to adapt to floods; and livelihood diversification, including through migration. It looks at responses and ground experiences in terms of common factors and key messages useful to those supporting the development of new adaptation approaches, including policy and institutional support, to meet the challenges.