Monday, March 30, 2009

GRANTS- Research on Sustainable Land Management in the Pamir-Alai Region

Distrib. by: Central-Eurasia-L - Announcement List for Central Eurasian Studies

GRANTS- Research on Sustainable Land Management in the Pamir-Alai Region

Posted by: Ulugbek Akhmedov <>

Call for Research Project Proposals


The project Sustainable Land Management (SLM) in the High Pamir and
Pamir-Alai Mountains (SLM-PALM) - an Integrated and Trans-boundary
Initiative in Central Asia aims to address the interlinked problems of
land degradation and poverty within one of Central Asia's critical
mountain 'water towers' and biodiversity hotspots. This will be
achieved through a trans-boundary approach that will seek to improve
the technological, institutional, policy and legislative environment
that is required for enabling mountain communities to take primary
responsibility for the productive and sustainable management of their
local ecosystem resources. A regional strategy and action plan for
sustainable development of the High Pamir and Pamir Alai mountains has
been developed through participatory multi-level and multi-sectoral
stakeholder consultations that took place in 2008.

To stimulate and ensure the effective and efficient implementation of
the regional strategy, participatory community-based resource
assessment, land use planning and micro-project implementation will be
undertaken at selected hot spots -currently eight communities in the
project region (map enclosed) - in the context of the trans-boundary
framework. Demonstrations of the community-based SLM activities are
expected to help mobilizing the additional resources for up-scaling
the initiative in the Pamir Alai region and in other trans-boundary
mountain environments in Central Asia. In addition to direct global
environmental benefits that will be accrued in the Pamir-Alai
mountains, the development of replicable generic guidelines that can
be used to address the problems of land degradation in similar
mountain environments will be an added benefit of the project.

Under this project, the International Center for Agricultural Research
in the Dry Areas (ICARDA) Program for Sustainable Agriculture in
Central Asia and the Caucasus (CAC) is launching a call for adaptive
research projects in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. Research institutes
and NGOs from these two countries are herewith invited to submit
project proposals for consideration for targeted research grants. The
proposals should address the necessary research and capacity building
activities, on research topics which include the following areas:

* Identification and introduction of crop varieties suited to the
high-altitude environments of PALM;
* Improved livestock production and range management practices;
* In-situ and ex-situ conservation of plant biodiversity of the PALM region;
* Conservation agriculture practices and resource conserving soil and
water; management technologies for mountain ecosystems;
* Market value-chain analyses for mountain crop, tree and livestock products;
* Assessment of the livelihoods of mountain communities;
* Renewable energy sources for mountain communities.

Proposals from other areas of SLM can eventually also be considered if
no sufficient proposals are submitted on these topics.


Applications are restricted to national institutions from the two
partner countries Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. International
co-financing and other agencies will be encouraged to couple with
national partners and cover any additional expenses beyond those that
can be covered by the GEF funds. The project funds can only be used
for research purposes within Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan.

The applications should be submitted to the ICARDA CAC Program under, where they will be collected and submitted
to the International Steering Committee of PALM (PALM-ISC) via e-mail
for final approval. The deadline for submitting proposals is 15 April,
2009. Proposals can be submitted in English or Russian.

Only applications submitted by e-mail will be accepted. The length of
the project concept notes should not exceed 6 pages in total. The
proposal should consist of one document only, in PDF format, not
exceeding 1 MB in size.

Proposals should be accompanied by a scanned cover letter of the
Director of the applicant's institution on the institution's letter
head, signed and stamped, stating that he supports the proposal.

It is expected that research grants will be awarded mid-May of 2009,
so that investigations can still start this year.

The research projects should be completed in a period of 12-24 months.
The proposals should consist of the following chapters: introduction,
objective and justification, material and methods, expected results,
financial and other resources needed to conclude the project
(personnel, travel costs, consumables, small equipment of up to 3.000
USD) and include information about eventual co-funding from the
applying institution. The proposal should also explain how the
research projects will be validated within this period on at least two
sites, so that they can be integrated in the final assessments of the
project and used as a basis for developing recommendations for
replication. The proposals should clearly state the project goal,
rationale, objectives, outputs and impacts along with research methods
and sources of information to be used. Applicants should provide one
progress report every 6 months that also details the use of financial
resources, and a final report two months after the end of the project.
Should the progress reports not be satisfactory, as rated by the
PALM-ISC, ICARDA-CAC reserves the right to annul the contract.

The maximum available fund for the each project proposal is 30.000
USD. Applicant institutes can submit more than one project proposal.
Applications can be submitted by one organization alone, or in
coherence with proposals submitted in parallel by other organizations.

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