Open Seminar: Research for Sustainable Land Management: Status, Challenges and Pathways for Improvement

Date: 18 February 2014

Speakers: Jyldyz Shigaeva, Chad Dear and Bettina Wolfgramm

Date: 18 February 2014, 4:00pm
Venue: University of Central Asia, 138 Toktogul Street, Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic,2nd Floor Conference Room.

This open seminar will present the findings of MSRI’s Background Paper on Sustainable Land Management in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan: A Research Review. The paper provides an overview of the state of research on sustainable land management (SLM) in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan and analyses the interface between research and action. The authors reviewed 131 publications and used the Global Land Project analytic framework to assess the focus and gaps in research. To gain further insight, they facilitated a stakeholder feedback session at the September 2012 Central Asian Mountain Partnership Forum (CAMP Forum 2012) in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, which focused on the theme of SLM.

Among findings to be discussed is a strong research focus on the impact of changes in land use and management on ecosystems, and corresponding lack of research on the implication of these changes on ecosystem services. An additional critical finding was the disconnect among researchers, practitioners, policy makers and land users in both shaping and using SLM research. The differences between Soviet-era and contemporary approaches to research on land use will be highlighted, providing a useful framework to build on Soviet achievements while addressing current realities of Central Asian mountain communities. The authors will also present recommendations for creating an enabling environment for applied SLM research.

The presentation will be followed by comments from two expert discussants: Malcolm Childress, Senior Land Administration Specialist of the World Bank and Almazbek Orozumbekov of the Kyrgyz Agrarian Academy, and an open discussion.


SLM background paper and other materials in Russian and English will be distributed.

Please RSVP to with your name and affiliation. 


Jyldyz Shigaeva is a Research Fellow with MSRI where she is involved in the development of its Learning Landscapes Initiative. Her research interests include SLM, rural livelihoods and sustainable mountain development. Previously, Jydyz served as Senior Researcher at the Institute of Mountain Physiology of the National Academy of Sciences of the Kyrgyz Republic (Laboratory of Sustainable Development of Mountain Regions) and an associate professor at the International University of Kyrgyzstan. She also worked on the Pamir-Alai Land Management (PALM) project funded by GEF/UNU. Jyldyz was PhD student in the Swiss Scientific Programme of the National Centre of Competence in Research (NCCR) North-South. She holds a candidate nauk degree in Ecology and her thesis was an assessment of land resources and land use transformation.

Dr Chad Dear is a Senior Research Scientist with MSRI, where he has led research teams on SLM and Mountain Tourism and Sustainability. He was involved in the establishment of MSRI, continues to shape its strategic development and is leading its Learning Landscapes Initiative. Chad’s work focuses on the nexus of rural development and conservation, particularly protected areas. He has led or advised programmes on natural resource management, tourism and displacement and resettlement in Central Asia, Afghanistan, East Timor, Southern Africa and the western United States. Chad was a Fulbright Fellow in Swaziland and earned his PhD from the University of Montana, where he is an affiliate faculty member of the College of Forestry and Conservation.

Dr Bettina Wolfgramm is a Research Scientist and Member of the Natural Resources and Ecosystem Services Cluster at the Centre for Development and Environment of the University of Bern and a Research Associate with MSRI. From 2009-2013, Bettina led Research Project RP11 on Land Resources Potential at the National Centre of Competence in Research (NCCR) North-South, with case studies in Ethiopia and Tajikistan. Her research focus is assessing the impact of SLM practices on ecosystem services, using a combination of quantitative methods with expert documentation and evaluation of SLM practices. Bettina works at different spatial scales from field scale impact assessments to large-area assessments of land conservation and degradation. She has worked with the Pamir-Alai Land Management (PALM) project financed by GEF/UNU, the Pilot Programme for Climate Resilience in Tajikistan and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation’s Integrated Watershed Management Initiative in Tajikistan.

The presentation will be conducted in Russian with simultaneous translation into English.

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