Exploring the policy environment for mainstreaming community-based adaptation (CBA) in Nepal
Regmi, Bimal Raj
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Purpose- Scaling up community-based adaptation (CBA) needs strong policy support. This paper aims to shed light onto the policy context of mainstreaming CBA in Nepal. Design/methodology/approach- The content and processes of Nepal’s development policies and climate change policies and programmes were examined. The policy analysis was supported by a literature review, review of policy documents, and interviews and discussions undertaken with policy makers, practitioners and communities. Findings- The findings show that despite a lack of clear focus on climate change, the decentralization provisions and bottom-up practices within Nepal’s development policies and plans could be entry points for mainstreaming CBA. However, experience shows that decentralization alone is insufficient because it benefits only a few institutions and individuals, while marginalizing the real beneficiaries. One of the policy conditions to mainstreaming CBA in development is to ensure that there are specific provisions for decentralization and inclusive devolution that can provide power and authority to local institutions and communities to make independent decisions and benefit the needy. There should also be mandatory legal provisions, endorsed by a country’s government, for an inclusive, citizen-centric, participatory, and bottom-up policy making process that involves the most vulnerable households and communities. Originality/value- This paper is of relevance to policy makers and practitioners in Nepal seeking to make informed policy decisions on effectively mainstreaming CBA into development. The analysis provided of the synergy and tradeoffs within existing policy provisions and processes can be used to guide the government and stakeholders in Nepal and other Least Developed Countries (LDCs) in creating favorable national and local-level policies and action plans.