Climate Research in Kathmandu

This article forms a series titled ‘Spotlight on Asia’. This article was written by student author Emily Henderson with contributions from academics from Tribhuvan University.

Tribhuvan University in Kirtipur, Kathmandu, is a partner with the International Universities Climate Alliance with a vision to galvanise international collaboration. With over 400,000 students enrolled, Tribhuvan teaches more than 80% of the total student population for higher education in Nepal.

Tribhuvan is equipped to contribute a breadth of skills and resources to partner universities, with a wide variety of disciplines on offer for its large student body.

Here are some interesting facts about their university:

  • Tribhuvan has access to environmental observation facilities across Nepal, through its 62 constituent and 1062 affiliated campuses.
  • In 2019, Tribhuvan installed weather monitoring stations at the peak of Mount Everest in collaboration with the USA’s National Geographic Society. These stations are well-maintained and operational, and the university plans to build more.
  • Since 2007, the university has monitored the health of glaciers across the Himalayas, checking their mass balance – how much ice they are losing and gaining, and whether a glacier system is growing or reducing in size. 

According to Professor Deepak Aryal, collaborating with other Climate Alliance member universities is highly beneficial to Tribhuvan’s research. South Asia spends less on research and development than economically developed countries in East Asia, Europe, and the Americas. The Climate Alliance can help rectify this through building contact between universities and improving South Asian education and research.

“We need to have an upgrading academic curriculum,” Professor Aryal says. To achieve this, he advocates for joint workshops and seminars between universities, fellowships, internships, exchange of scientific and technological systems, and guest lectures at different universities by prominent scientists. This will create an international network of knowledge-sharing between universities, with Tribhuvan taking part to share knowledge, new ideas, and resources.

Emily Henderson
Student Author
International Universities Climate Alliance