event 04 Sep 2023

Nexus News // Sustainability assessment of the WEFE Nexus for irrigated agriculture: Interdisciplinary approaches for Central Asia (WEFCA)

This article provides insights of the Nexus Gains Initiative´s 2nd International Summer School 2023 held from August 21 to 25, 2023 in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. It marked a significant stride in advancing interdisciplinary knowledge, as it delved into the theme of "Sustainability assessment of the water-energy-food-environment nexus for irrigated agriculture: Interdisciplinary approaches for Central Asia (WEFCA)."

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2nd International Summer School 2023

The 2nd International Summer School of 2023, a cornerstone of the Nexus Gains Initiative, illuminated the vital Nexus between water, energy, food, and the environment. The Summer School, held from August 21 to 25, 2023, in Tashkent, Uzbekistan marked a significant stride in advancing interdisciplinary knowledge, as it delved into the theme of "Sustainability assessment of the water-energy-food-environment nexus for irrigated agriculture: Interdisciplinary approaches for Central Asia (WEFCA)." This theme was meticulously curated to address the pressing challenges confronting modern agricultural practices, especially within water-scarce regions such as Central Asia. It provided a vital platform for participants to immerse themselves in an enriching learning, collaboration, and experiential exploration environment. Distinguished experts and lecturers spearheaded the dissemination of cutting-edge insights, fostering an exchange of ideas that transcended geographical boundaries.

The summer school has captured the essence of the event's core themes, showcasing how it crystallized the nexus's intricate dynamics and underscored the urgency of implementing sustainable practices. From unveiling the Nexus Gains impact to facilitating interdisciplinary dialogues, the Summer School served as a crucible of knowledge and collaboration, propelling us closer to a future where resource management is innovative and harmonious.

Nexus Gains Initiative: A Catalyst for Change

Central to the success of the 2nd International Summer School 2023 was the Nexus Gains Initiative, a visionary effort by CGIAR. This initiative, backed by One CGIAR Centers—specifically International Water Management Institute (IWMI), International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA), International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), and Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT—alongside esteemed partners like Leibniz Centre for Agricultural Landscape Research (ZALF) and the Youth Union of Uzbekistan, served as the driving force behind the event's inception and execution.

The Nexus Gains Initiative, guided by its mission to realize multiple benefits across water, energy, food, and ecosystems, played a central role in the Summer School. With an urgent need for sustainable solutions amidst increasing global challenges, this initiative provided a cohesive platform for addressing complex interdependencies through collaboration, research, and knowledge dissemination. The Summer School exemplified the Initiative's principles by convening experts, early-career scientists, and stakeholders to engage deeply with the water-energy-food-environment (WEF) nexus in irrigated agriculture.

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Unveiling the Nexus Gains Impact

The impact of the Nexus Gains Initiative was profound and resounded throughout the Summer School's program. Distinguished speakers, scholars, and educators, furnished with their expertise, delivered presentations that navigated the details of the WEF Nexus. These presentations included insightful contributions from Dr. Mohsin Hafeez, who illuminated diverse dimensions of the nexus and its relevance to Central Asia's agricultural landscape, and Prof. Salohiddinov, who explained water resources management in the Aral Sea Basin. The lectures also featured Prof. Katharina Helming, who presented on participatory sustainability assessment, contributing to a holistic understanding of the WEF Nexus.

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Lecturers such as Dr. Hamidov, Dr. Egamberdieva, Dr. Shilp Verma, Dr. Marlène Elias, Dr. Bunyod Holmatov, and Mr. Oyture Anarbekov who explored environmental footprint assessments. Their contributions enriched participants' understanding and underscored the interdisciplinary nature of the Nexus Gains Initiative. Additionally, Dr. Zafar Gafurov, the driving force behind the Summer School, presented his insights on the WEF Nexus' significance and its implications for sustainable development in Central Asia.

Uniting for Sustainable Practices

The 2nd International Summer School 2023 attracted a diverse cohort of 31 participants welcomed from 8 different countries, with a notable representation from Central Asian states including Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Turkmenistan. Participants from Pakistan, the USA, and Ecuador enriched the event's global perspective. These individuals with unique backgrounds and expertise united to gain valuable knowledge and insights into the water-energy-food-environment (WEF) nexus approach.

Throughout the Summer School, participants engaged in dynamic discussions, collaborative group activities, and immersive presentations, all centered around the nexus's profound implications for sustainable practices. By actively participating in these activities, attendees developed a comprehensive understanding of the nexus's complex interdependencies and its potential to reshape resource management in the face of pressing global challenges.

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The participants showcased the WEF Nexus approach and its wide-ranging relevance and impact by representing various academic disciplines, industries, and nations. The Summer School became a vibrant platform for cross-cultural learning and international collaboration as they interacted with distinguished experts and contributed their perspectives.

This diverse group of participants wholeheartedly embraced the opportunity to learn about the WEF nexus approach's benefits and its profound relevance in Central Asia and beyond. Their active engagement and keen interest demonstrated a collective commitment to applying newfound insights in their respective fields and regions, thereby contributing to the nexus's sustainable development objectives on a global scale.

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Recognizing Excellence and Collaboration

The success of the 2nd International Summer School 2023 was celebrated with certificates of active participation. These certificates acknowledged the program's completion and symbolized the commitment to advancing sustainable practices and knowledge sharing.

The collaborative spirit fostered by the Nexus Gains Initiative was evident as attendees engaged in group activities, discussions, and presentations. These interactions underscored the power of collective efforts in addressing the WEF Nexus challenges. The initiative's impact extended beyond the event itself, with ongoing collaborations and research projects planned by the participants.

The 2nd International Summer School 2023 was a testament to the Nexus Gains Initiative's vision and impact. It showcased the power of collaboration, interdisciplinary exploration, and knowledge dissemination in addressing the intricate interdependencies within the water-energy-food-environment nexus. As attendees departed with enriched insights, the legacy of this event resonated with the Initiative's commitment to fostering sustainable practices, resilience, and equitable development under the leadership of Dr. Zafar Gafurov, who led the overall conduction of the Summer School.


For additional information please contact: Nasiba Kamilova (K.Nasiba@cgiar.org) & Zafar Gafurov (z.gafurov@cgiar.org).

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