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Fragility, Complexity and Development: A Political Economy Analysis of Kosi Basin

India, Nepal
Started In: 
Completed In: 
Supported By: 
The Asia Foundation

Kosi Sub-basin has been a focus of a variety of hydrological interventions for irrigation, flood control, up-stream hydropower development, livelihood programmes designed to generate incomes in riverine communities, navigational use, ecological restorations, and forest and wildlife conservation.

This project aimed to conduct a Political Economy Analysis (PEA) of the Kosi Sub-basin to better comprehend the role of the different actors, the interests of these diverse groups and to bring about a dialogue seeking commonality for the sustainability of the basin.

The project identified the key issues of the Kosi basin and multi-layered key stakeholders who are related to the basin’s resources and diverse interventions, their political and economic interests at different scales (sub-basin, regional, national and trans-national), intervention designs (flood control, irrigation, hydropower generation, infrastructure development, tourism, livelihood development and conservation and restoration of natural resources and biodiversity.  

The key impacts/ messages are:

The major impact of the project was the development of the political economic analysis report which recommended the following points to resolve the Kosi basin issues and challenges:

  • PEA of the Kosi basin helped to unpack the dynamic interactions among natural, social, political and economic systems between India and Nepal
  • The project identified the key issues and challenges of the basin and gave directions to resolve the issues through community participation