The Aga Khan Agency for Habitat partners with Karakoram International University, Gilgit, for programs of scientific and technical collaborations to advance the state of living conditions and reduce the vulnerability of mountain communities to natural disasters. A high-level meeting held between Aga Khan Agency for Habitat and Karakoram International University, at Gilgit today to discuss technical aspects of the partnership for information sharing, exchange of resources and provision of opportunities. The meeting followed by the signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), to advance the state of living conditions and reduces the vulnerability of mountain communities to natural disasters. The MoU was signed by the Vice Chancellor of KIU Prof. Dr. Attaullah Shah and the CEO of AKAH Mr. Nawab Ali Khan at main Campus KIU.
In his remarks Engr. Prof. Dr. Attaullah Shah, Vice Chancellor, Karakoram International University shared, “As a problem-solving and results-oriented approach in Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR), research is important to identify relevant solutions and optimize the use of resources. But this requires collaboration across the technical fields, and with all stakeholders, to guide scientific research and support scientific education and training. He further added that KIU is committed to making social development and evolution of peaceful and pluralistic societies in the mountainous areas of Pakistan. This formal linkage between the Aga Khan Agency for Habitat and KIU is vital to boost research and technical cooperation by sharing of knowledge, expertise, and resources. This endeavor will result into evolution of disaster resilient and flourishing communities across Gilgit-Baltistan.”
“Dealing with the issues of climate change and ensuring safe and sustainable human habitat in the mountain areas is a key challenge of our times. We believe this challenge can only be addressed through strong cooperation and synergy between public and private sector organizations including academia and the civil society through generation and sharing of knowledge, experience and technical cooperation” emphasized Mr. Nawab Ali Khan, CEO of AKAH while speaking at the occasion. He further added that this partnership will provide KIU researchers the opportunity of a field laboratory in AKDN projects for applied research in areas of disaster management and climate change adaptation and mitigation which will ultimately contribute to improvement in quality of life of the communities. He appreciated the support that the public sector organizations have extended to AKDN and termed this partnership another key step for the development of the people of Gilgit-Baltistan.
In the past AKAH (AKPBS) jointly with KIU has worked on the assessment of selected glaciers and the development of skilled craftsmanship in Gilgit-Baltistan through joint programs. Hundreds of craftspeople have benefited from the joint program and are benefitting communities with their learned skills.