IDRC evidence and innovation supports India’s adaptation to climate change

February 23, 2018

IDRC is investing in local solutions to address climate change-related challenges in India, including heat stress, water management, and climate-related migration.

Starting this year, IDRC will support the development of a new university program in water science and policy, and the Centre will provide new fellowships to emerging women leaders. This support is intended to drive innovations that will help vulnerable people and communities adapt to climate change.

“Over the last decade, we have supported many research projects to address economic and social issues in India related to climate change,” said IDRC President Jean Lebel. “We believe that local solutions are critical for adaptation, and we’re proud to be building climate change leaders for today and tomorrow.”

New projects

Program on water science and policy at Shiv Nadar University
(Shiv Nadar University, $550,000)

With support from IDRC, Shiv Nadar University will develop a new water science and policy program to develop a critical mass of water professionals in India. A masters-level teaching program will be established alongside a research program, through which faculty and students will work on pressing problems in water science and policy.

South Asian Water Leadership Program on Climate Change
(South Asia Consortium for Interdisciplinary Water Resources Studies, $536,500)

The program seeks to increase the number of women occupying leadership roles in the water sector in South Asia, including India, and it will award fellowships to female master’s students.

Projects already underway

Climate adaptive action plans to manage heat stress in Indian cities
(Integrated Research and Action for Development, $1,001,800)

The project seeks to improve the management of heat stress risks in India by developing spatially differentiated and gender sensitive heat stress action plans in Delhi, Bhubaneswar, and Rajkot. It is expected to support at least 20 early-career researchers, train 30 officials from various health centres and hospitals, and build the capacity of municipal commissioners, urban planners, city engineers, and municipal health officers.

Integrated rural-urban water management for climate-based adaptation in Indian cities
(ICLEI South Asia, CA$1,013,000)

The project is seeking to transition the Indian cities of Solapur and Vijayawada and their catchments toward an integrated climate-proof approach to water management.

Adaptation at scale in semi-arid regions
(Indian Institute for Human Settlements, $3,276,920)

The project seeks to develop proactive, long-term approaches to adaptation in semi-arid regions, including diagnostic studies, knowledge synthesis, and information sharing.

It is part of the Collaborative Adaptation Research Initiative in Africa and Asia (CARIAA), a partnership with the UK’s DFID.

Himalayan adaptation, water, and resilience (HI-AWARE)
(Energy and Resources Institute, $1,347,200)

The project seeks to enhance the adaptive capacities and climate resilience of vulnerable communities in the Hindu Kush Himalayan region. Highlights to date include the piloting of a sustainable roof that has the potential for reducing indoor temperatures in the Savda-Ghevra settlement of West Delhi.

It is part of CARIAA, a partnership with the UK’s DFID.

Deltas, vulnerability, and climate change: Migration as an adaptation
(Jadavpur University, $2,535,771)

The project is developing a model that integrates climate and socio-economic factors to assess when migration is an appropriate adaptation option. The project’s India team is working in the Indian Bengal Delta and the Mahanadi Delta.

It is part of CARIAA, a partnership with the UK’s DFID.

Understanding the dynamic changes in India's peri-urban regions and building capacity and resilience in the context of urbanization and climate change
(Center for Study of Science, Technology and Policy, $268,200)

The project is examining the drivers of peri-urban change in India. Working closely with stakeholders, it is developing a strategy for identifying climate-resilient development pathways for peri-urban regions adjacent to Bangalore and Chennai.