Enhancing socioeconomic resilience and climate adaptation through value chain development of mountain products in Hindu Kush Himalayas

Saranjam M. Baig, Aftab A. Khan, Amjad Ali*, Muhammad Zafar Khan, Sultan Ahmed, Ghulam M. Shah, Ghulam Ali

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this study is to examine and understand the dynamics of households’ income in Hindu Kush Himalayan region in the face of changing climate and to explore the value chain development of two unique mountain products (yak and sea buckthorn) as potential strategies to increase socioeconomic resilience for enhanced adaptive capacity. The study seeks to answer that how local people perceive climate change and its impact on their household income and to what extent value chain development of mountain products prove to be a potential strategy for building climate resilience among local people? This study contributes to the existing scholarship on climate adaptation by proposing non-conventional and innovative livelihood strategies for enhancing climate resilience of local communities in four valleys of northern Pakistan. The research relies on both primary and secondary data. A field survey was carried out to collect data from 443 households using a structured questionnaire. This study shows that the mountain communities consider climate-induced natural hazards as major causes of change in households’ income. To enhance the socioeconomic resilience against these climate vulnerabilities, cultivating sea buckthorn, breeding yak and developing value chains for related products has been suggested. Breeding yaks are both less labor intensive and climate resilient. Products made from yak hair and dung have the potential for high return if their value chains are established. Likewise, sea buckthorn is also considered less labor intensive and insensitive to extreme weather conditions. It could generate by-products used for food, medicine, cosmetics and construction. In order to improve socioeconomic resilience of local communities and enhance their adaptive capacity against effects of climate change, a value chain approach for yak and sea-buckthorn products has been proposed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8451-8473
Number of pages23
JournalEnvironment, Development and Sustainability
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021


  • Climate change
  • Community perception
  • Gilgit-Baltistan
  • Hindu Kush Himalayas
  • Income
  • Livelihood
  • Sea buckthorn
  • Value chain
  • Yak

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law

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