Nexus game at CALP: progress, dynamics and results

Publication date: 21 September 2023

ALMATY, KAZAKHSTAN – Today, the Regional Environmental Centre for Central Asia (CAREC) hosted a Nexus game for participants of the 13th Central Asian Leadership Program on Environment for Sustainable Development (CALP). The game was moderated by Marhabo Yodalieva, Capacity Development and Education Lead of the USAID Regional Water and Vulnerable Environment Activity (USAID WAVE).

15 young professionals from Central Asian countries tried on the roles of ministers of agriculture, energy and water resources, conducted interstate negotiations and came to a compromise between the water, energy and food sectors to make effective decisions.


In addition, the Nexus game clearly illustrated the existing issues between upstream and downstream countries. Participants were able to put themselves in the shoes of downstream countries that were not ready to put up with water pollution coming from upstream countries.

The game also allowed us to present the concept of the water-energy-food approach in an accessible, interactive format. This concept is based on the interdependence between water, energy and food resources. It helps ensure sustainable and efficient management of resources through coordination between relevant sectors, taking into account the balance between economic, social and environmental impacts.

At the same time, as part of the training, the Community of Practice (CoP) platform was presented to the participants. Community of Practice platform development specialist Botagoz Smagulova spoke about CoP’s opportunities such as courses, trainings, lectures, analytical publications, etc.




Brief history

The Nexus Simulation was developed by the Centre for Systems Solutions in collaboration with the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis and the “Sustainable Energy for All” Initiative. The history of its implementation in the Central Asian region began in 2018 within the framework of the EU project "Nexus Dialogue in Central Asia" implemented by CAREC. The game represents a facilitated process of playing 5 different scenarios for developing the territories upstream and downstream while addressing water needs of population, industry and agriculture and taking into account climate change challenges. Currently, the Nexus Game is actively promoted by CAREC in universities, academies, basin organizations and media in Central Asia with with funding from the EU and USAID.

The Community of Practice is a communication and outreach platform for bringing together representatives of educational institutions, research institutions, government agencies, international organizations, youth and other stakeholders. The platform was created in 2022 by USAID WAVE in collaboration with CAREC on the basis of the Eurasian River Basin Portal (

Additional information: Ludmila Kiktenko, Environmental Management Programme’s Manager, CAREC,  

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