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Striving to achieve desired results in a time of challenging disruption can be a daunting task. From unpredictable politics to armed conflicts, unprecedented migrations to resource insecurities, our societies are increasingly having to adapt to ever changing social and ecological conditions. The Central Asian countries of Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan and Tajikistan are, as with other parts of the world, facing their own specific realities with respect to climate and environmental challenges. Standing at the cross roads of Asia and Europe and with the entire history of the Silk Road colouring their past, these countries not only have needs with respect to adapting to uncertain climate and environmental futures, they also have much to offer.

From mid-March 2017, 26 individuals from government, business and civil society in Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan and Tajikistan will gather together to start a year-long transformational leadership ‘Learning Journey’ funded by the German Development Agency (GIZ). They will inquire into different modes, methods and tools of leadership and will work to innovate approaches that could best serve their countries looking to ensure resilience in the face of uncertain climate and environmental futures. The aim of the programme is to jointly work on leadership issues related to natural resources, strengthen leadership and management competencies and mind-set and foster networking amongst these change agents. Over a period of a year, participants will come together for three workshops and work on the application of learnings in the interim phases, possibly accompanied by virtual programme components. The programme will be facilitated by international leadership experts, include engagement with experts on climate change related topics as well as interaction with relevant stakeholders during journeys into the field.

At the end of the Learning Journey, participants are expected to have enhanced the skills, knowledge and experience along the following themes:

Network development:

  • have built strong relations and ideally trust amongst each other
  • have formed a leadership network to promote cooperation on sustainability across the 3 countries of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan
  • are using collaboration tools to continue and potentially extend the network after the programme

Adaptation to Climate change:

  • have a deeper understanding about of uncertain climate futures
  • understand that it cuts across all portfolios
  • understand the value of enabling adaptation strategies now
  • have ideas about how they can make a contribution to enabling adaptation strategies


  • understand that transformational leadership is about personal and collective initiative for a greater good
  • have been inspired to see themselves as change agents
  • can think and act creatively and innovatively
  • are able to empower their teams and peers to work more effectively as change agents
  • have found useful methods and thinking to overcome their own challenges
  • have demonstrated commitment to a desired change they have defined
  • request and know where to get more theoretical background and tools for leadership activities


  • understand theoretical background of selected management situations.
  • have found useful tools to advance cooperation and their own effectiveness
  • have learned how to apply (and adapt) those tools

Status: In progress

Type: Global

Tags: climate change Asia education Kyrgyzstan natural resources Kazakhstan Tajikistan Central Asia


GRID-Arendal's activities are nearly always a cooperative undertaking made possible through collaboration with partners and donors.

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