Student research competition on sustainable management of natural resources in Central Asia and Afghanistan

Publication date: 17 April 2018

CAREC announces student research competition on sustainable management of natural resources in Central Asia and Afghanistan. The competition aims to build capacities of the young generation of specialists in the water, agricultural and environmental protection sectors in the Central Asian countries and Afghanistan. Graduate students within and outside the region are welcome!  Research must be focused on sustainable management of water, land and energy resources in Central Asia and Afghanistan.

Competition is sponsored by the Smart Waters (USAID) and Climate Adaptation and Mitigation Program for Aral Sea Basin (WB) projects.

Main topics of the competition

  • Water management and reforms: IWRM, international and national laws, policy development;
  • Water management approaches for transboundary basins;
  • Technologies and practices for sustainable water and land management on community and farm level;
  • Water supply for rural areas: provision with drinking water, etc.;
  • Economics of natural resources management, valuation of ecosystem services, the economic efficiency of water use;
  • Climate modelling and climate risk assessment;
  • Assessment of climate vulnerability of households and sectors;
  • Adaptation to climate change in agriculture and water sector;
  • Low-carbon development, promotion of renewable energy and energy efficiency;
  • Water, food and energy nexus;
  • Gender and gender policy in management of natural resources.

General conditions 

The competition is open for graduate students, from universities within and outside the region, who plan to focus their research on sustainable management of water, land and energy resources in Central Asian countries and Afghanistan.
Proposed research must be part of applicant`s dissertation and must be completed within 10 months or within other timeline agreed with the organizers. 

Key dates

  •  May 25, 2018 – deadline for submission of applications
  • June 30, 2018 – the announcement of the winners

The evaluation process

Applications will be screened by the commission consisting of representatives from academic institutions in Central Asia in cooperation with the German-Kazakh University. 

Evaluation Criteria

  • the relevance of the research proposed;
  • clarity and validity of the goals, problem selection and methodology of the research;
  • the balance between the application content and the requested funding amount;
  • feasibility of the goals set, research timelines and budget (up to US$ 1,500), and availability of additional funding in excess of the budget;
  • the novelty of the research proposed and the working potential for the Central Asian region;
  • partnership (the organization to co-implement the research).

Extended criterion

  • interdisciplinary approach

Financial support for selected applications

The competition winners will be provided with financial support to carry out their research in the amount of up to US$ 1,500. This support will be based on the reimbursement of actual expenses incurred by the students during the research. Eligible costs include expenses associated with field trips, surveys, laboratory tests, printing, etc.


Zhanna Babagaliyeva
Climate Change and Sustainable Energy Program Specialist
phone +7727 265 4333; 265 4334 (ext.179), +77017742989


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