To celebrate Open Data Day 2023, the Nepal Institute of Research and Communications (NIRC) implemented the ‘Enhancing Nepali Youth’s Awareness on Climate Change through AI Technology (ENACT)’ project to train Nepalese Youth’s on climate change.

The project was implemented to:

  • Sensitise the local youth/early career researchers about emerging climate change issues and the potential effects of climate-induced disasters in their communities.
  • Capacitate the local youth/early career researchers on using open data and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to address climate change issues.
  • Advocate the local government representatives for promoting and allocating resources to initiate the use of open data and AI technological solutions to address climate change issues.

The project was implemented in 3 rural municipalities of Saptari district, Madhesh province in Nepal namely – Mahadeva, Tirhut, and Chinnamasta. A total of 32 youth/early career researchers participated in the workshop series of this project. Likewise, the local representatives of the rural municipalities, especially the leadership (Chairpersons and Chief Administrative Officers) also actively participated during the panel discussion and shared their insights and present status and priorities on data/information and climate change.

Activities Organised

Issue Identification Workshop

A half-day workshop was organised on March 8, 2023, to brainstorm and identify the local climate change issues that require attention.

Capacity Building Workshop

A full-day capacity building workshop was organised on March 12, 2023, in Rajbiraj City. The workshop included a series of activities such as sessions on climate change, open data, AI & its use to address climate change, and group brainstorming on possible solutions.

During the session on climate changes, the participants were introduced to the concept of climate change, the differences between weather and climate, how climate change has resulted in climate-induced disasters, climate change scenarios in Nepal, vulnerabilities of communities living in hazard and risk-prone areas, the local adaptation and coping mechanisms.

Policy Advocacy Workshop

Following the full-day capacity building workshop on March 9, a half-day policy advocacy workshop was organised on March 10, 2023, among the local representatives of Mahadeva, Chinnamasta, and Tirhut  Rural Municipalities to gather their perspectives on open data and AI to address climate change related issues as well as advocate the local government leadership for ownership and prioritisation on evidence-induced development.

A panel discussion and presentation were made by the group participants, summarising the group work and lessons drawn during the capacity building workshop held on March 9.  Synopsis of the perspectives from the panel discussion: 

  • Poor quality of education system in rural municipalities affecting learning and development among youth. 
  • Lack of technical expertise and human resources in the rural municipalities for regular data/information management and updating. 
  • No IT Officer recruited till date in the rural municipality due to political instability.
  • Data collection done on ad hoc basis and not followed scientific procedures.

During the closing ceremony, certificates of participation were also provided to the participants and souvenirs were provided to the local government representatives.

Nepal Institute of Research and Communications (NIRC) received a small grant to host Open Data Day(s) (ODD) events and activities.