Home Institution

University of Colorado at Boulder

Publication Date

Fall 2013

Program Name

Nepal: Tibetan and Himalayan Peoples


Nepal is in the midst of a severe food deficit as well as in the process of recovering from a 10 year civil war. Today, nearly 80 percent of the population works in the agricultural sector which accounts for 38 percent of the Gross Domestic Product. Recent declines in agricultural production have depressed rural economies, increased widespread hunger and catalyzed an influx of urban migration from outside of Kathmandu. Within its total population of 29 million people, 55% earn less than $1.25 a day, 29% of children under 5 years of age are underweight, and 41% of the same demographic suffer from subsequent stunting of growth and development1. Further, the overwhelming amount of Nepal’s youth venturing abroad for economic and educational opportunities they feel they do not have access to at home is steadily perpetuating a detrimental Brain Drain. As a response to these symptoms of a struggling nation, many non-governmental actors are initiating agricultural programs in both urban and rural Nepal in an effort to diversify nutritional portfolios of Nepal’s citizens and revitalize the deflating economy through a diversification of agricultural output. Many of these same actors hope to eradicate chemical farming and instead reintegrate organic aspects of traditional farming with modern, sustainable methods of intensifying crop yields to meet national food needs as well as market demands.


Agricultural and Resource Economics | Demography, Population, and Ecology | Family, Life Course, and Society | Inequality and Stratification


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