Summer school on mountain landscapes held at UCA


The Mountain Societies Research Institute (MSRI) of the University of Central Asia (UCA) and the German Research Centre for Geosciences (GFZ) began its second Summer School about ”Learning Landscapes through Environmental Research and Monitoring” on 3 July at UCA’s Naryn Campus in Kyrgyzstan. The course participants include 22 undergraduate and graduate students from Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan representing 10 universities.

The summer school is part of the Paleoclimate, Environmental Change and Social Interaction in Central Asia (PALESCA) project, funded by the German Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF).

Over nine days, research fellows and experts from the MSRI, the GFZ, the University of Amsterdam, Naryn State University, the Central-Asian Institute for Applied Geosciences, Kyrgyz-Russian Slavic University, KyrgyzHydroromet and the CAMP Alatoo Public Foundation introduced students to several pillars of landscape research such as geology, natural resource management, paleoclimatology, geomorphology, dendrochronology, wildlife studies and socio-economic aspects of mountain development.

Students were taught using a variety of methods, including lectures, discussions and experiments. The course also included field trips to broaden students’ capacities and experiences in their fields. They visited Salkyn Tor National Park, Naryn State Nature Reserve, Chatyr-Kul Lake, Ken-Saz summer pasture and Bugu Maral deer nursery, among others.

“We offer an intensive, yet exciting programme aimed at enabling students interested in environment science to enhance their knowledge and expertise in scientific research,” said Dr Lira Sagynbekova, a MSRI research fellow. “Participants have an opportunity to attend various lectures and laboratory exercises, and also experience fieldwork to get acquainted with scientific methodology covering a wide spectrum of research techniques.”

Sabrina Muzafari is a student who participated in the summer school this year. Muzafari is studying earth and environmental sciences at UCA in Khorog, Tajikistan. “I am excited about learning from researchers about their work and projects. There are engineers, biologists, oil-engineers and representatives from different sectors. Each of us looks at the questions and problems from a different angle, which creates very interesting discussions,” said Muzafari.

This year’s summer school ended on 11 July. The goal was during this time for the researchers and students to have gained knowledge and capacity in many areas of environmental science.

News and photo from Alma Karsymbek-Uzbekova - University of Central Asia

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