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  • Open Access
  • © 2021

Earth Observation Science and Applications for Risk Reduction and Enhanced Resilience in Hindu Kush Himalaya Region

A Decade of Experience from SERVIR

  • Earth observation science and applications for improving environmental decision making in transboundary landscape

  • A collection of multi-disciplinary topics with practically tested applications for Hindu Kush Himalayan region

  • A complete package of knowledge on project cycle including service area planning, stakeholder consultation, user engagement, capacity building, monitoring and evaluation, gender integration, and communications.

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Table of contents (19 chapters)

  1. Front Matter

    Pages i-xxxiii
  2. Earth Observation Applications in the Hindu Kush Himalaya Region—Evolution and Adoptions

    • Birendra Bajracharya, Daniel E. Irwin, Rajesh Bahadur Thapa, Mir A. Matin
    Pages 1-22Open Access
  3. Service Planning Approach and Its Application

    • Rajesh Bahadur Thapa, Birendra Bajracharya, Mir A. Matin, Eric Anderson, Pete Epanchin
    Pages 23-40Open Access
  4. Geospatial Applications in the HKH Region: Country Needs and Priorities

    • Mir A. Matin, Sheikh Tawhidul Islam
    Pages 41-57Open Access
  5. A Regional Drought Monitoring and Outlook System for South Asia

    • Faisal Mueen Qamer, Mir A. Matin, Ben Zaitchik, Kiran Shakya, Yi Fan, Nishanta Khanal et al.
    Pages 59-78Open Access
  6. In-Season Crop-Area Mapping for Wheat and Rice in Afghanistan and Bangladesh

    • Varun Tiwari, Faisal Mueen Qamer, Mir A. Matin, Walter Lee Ellenburg, Waheedullah Yousafi, Mustafa Kamal
    Pages 79-101Open Access
  7. Regional Land Cover Monitoring System for Hindu Kush Himalaya

    • Kabir Uddin, Mir A. Matin, Nishanta Khanal, Sajana Maharjan, Birendra Bajracharya, Karis Tenneson et al.
    Pages 103-125Open Access
  8. Climate-Resilient Forest Management in Nepal

    • Vishwas Sudhir Chitale, Sunil Thapa, Mir A. Matin, Kamala Gurung, Shankar Adhikari, Rabindra Maharjan
    Pages 127-145Open Access
  9. Forest Fire Detection and Monitoring

    • Sunil Thapa, Vishwas Sudhir Chitale, Sudip Pradhan, Bikram Shakya, Sundar Sharma, Smriety Regmi et al.
    Pages 147-167Open Access
  10. Enhancing Flood Early Warning System in the HKH Region

    • Karma Tsering, Kiran Shakya, Mir A. Matin, Jim Nelson, Birendra Bajracharya
    Pages 169-200Open Access
  11. Rapid Flood Mapping Using Multi-temporal SAR Images: An Example from Bangladesh

    • Kabir Uddin, Mir A. Matin, Rajesh Bahadur Thapa
    Pages 201-210Open Access
  12. Monitoring of Glaciers and Glacial Lakes in Afghanistan

    • Sudan Bikash Maharjan, Finu Shrestha, Fayezurahman Azizi, Esmatullah Joya, Birendra Bajracharya, Mohammad Tayib Bromand et al.
    Pages 211-230Open Access
  13. The High-Impact Weather Assessment Toolkit

    • Patrick N. Gatlin, Jonathan L. Case, Jayanthi Srikishen, Bhupesh Adhikary
    Pages 231-250Open Access
  14. Geospatial Information Technology for Information Management and Dissemination

    • Sudip Pradhan, Birendra Bajracharya, Kiran Shakya, Bikram Shakya
    Pages 251-267Open Access
  15. Strengthening the Capacity on Geospatial Information Technology and Earth Observation Applications

    • Rajesh Bahadur Thapa, Poonam Tripathi, Mir A. Matin, Birendra Bajracharya, Betzy E. Hernandez Sandoval
    Pages 269-289Open Access
  16. Gender Integration in Earth Observation and Geo-information Technology Applications: Correlation and Connections

    • Chanda Gurung Goodrich, Kamala Gurung, Menaka Hamal
    Pages 291-306Open Access
  17. Communicating Science for Informed Decision-Making

    • Birendra Bajracharya, Utsav Maden, Devrin Weiss, Leah Kucera
    Pages 307-326Open Access
  18. User Engagement for Sustaining Services

    • Naina Shakya, Santosh Pathak, Birendra Bajracharya, Mir A. Matin
    Pages 327-342Open Access
  19. Approach and Process for Effective Planning, Monitoring, and Evaluation

    • Lalu Maya Kadel, Farid Ahmad, Ganesh Bhattarai
    Pages 343-362Open Access
  20. Lessons and Future Perspectives of Earth Observation and GIT in the HKH

    • Mir A. Matin, Birendra Bajracharya, Rajesh Bahadur Thapa
    Pages 363-375Open Access

About this book

This open access book is a consolidation of lessons learnt and experiences gathered from our efforts to utilise Earth observation (EO) science and applications to address environmental challenges in the Hindu Kush Himalayan region. It includes a complete package of knowledge on service life cycles including multi-disciplinary topics and practically tested applications for the HKH. It comprises 19 chapters drawing from a decade’s worth of experience gleaned over the course of our implementation of SERVIR-HKH – a joint initiative of NASA, USAID, and ICIMOD – to build capacity on using EO and geospatial technology for effective decision making in the region.

The book highlights SERVIR’s approaches to the design and delivery of information services – in agriculture and food security; land cover and land use change, and ecosystems; water resources and hydro-climatic disasters; and weather and climate services. It also touches upon multidisciplinary topics such as service planning; gender integration; user engagement; capacity building; communication; and monitoring, evaluation, and learning.

We hope that this book will be a good reference document for professionals and practitioners working in remote sensing, geographic information systems, regional and spatial sciences, climate change, ecosystems, and environmental analysis. Furthermore, we are hopeful that policymakers, academics, and other informed audiences working in sustainable development and evaluation – beyond the wider SERVIR network and well as within it – will greatly benefit from what we share here on our applications, case studies, and documentation across cross-cutting topics. 


  • Earth observation
  • Geoinformation technology
  • Agriculture and food security
  • Land use land cover
  • Flooding and extreme weather
  • Climate services
  • Service area planning
  • User engagement
  • Capacity building
  • Disaster risk reduction
  • Open Access
  • Remote Sensing/Photogrammetry


"The editors have made a remarkable effort to tailor and make uniform the style and storyline across the chapters. Other strengths of the book are the schemes and tables that illustrate the approaches taken in project implementation and in each of the specific services. … these illustrations play an efficient role for the readability of the book." (María J. Polo, Mountain Research and Development, Vol. 42 (2), May, 2022)

Editors and Affiliations

  • International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), Kathmandu, Nepal

    Birendra Bajracharya, Rajesh Bahadur Thapa, Mir A. Matin

About the editors

Birendra Bajracharya is Senior Remote Sensing and Geoinformation Specialist at ICIMOD and leads the SERVIR-HKH initiative. He specialises on decision support systems, spatial data infrastructure, capacity building, and applications on natural resources management.

Rajesh Bahadur Thapa is Remote Sensing and Geoinformation Specialist at ICIMOD. His work focuses on radar applications to monitor and assess terrestrial environments, and capacity building on Earth observation and geoinformation technologies in the region.

Mir Matin is Theme Leader for the Geospatial Solutions at ICIMOD. He provides scientific leadership in building and promoting innovative and user-oriented geospatial applications to support improved resilience and livelihoods in the region.

Bibliographic Information

Buy it now

Buying options

Softcover Book USD 59.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Compact, lightweight edition
  • Dispatched in 3 to 5 business days
  • Free shipping worldwide - see info

Tax calculation will be finalised at checkout

Other ways to access