PALESCA - Palaeoclimate, Environmental Change and Social Interaction in Central Asia – linking Citizen and Institutional Science

The PALESCA project will bring together active partners in the mountainous regions of Kyrgyzstan focusing on "paleoclimate research" and "mountain societies" in order to translate scientific results into improved living conditions of the population, especially in remote mountain regions. The particular challenge, but also the opportunity, is to combine the quite different approach and thinking of partners who are more focused on geological time periods and sociologically oriented ones, and to lead to a new quality.

In an integrated approach of investigations of paleoclimate archives (in particular lake sediments and speleothems), parallel monitoring of environmental parameters and the involvement of broad parts of the local population via Citizen Science projects, regional climate variability on different time scales and anthropogenic feedback processes as well as amplitudes and repetition rates of climatic and non-climatic extreme events (droughts, floods, earthquakes, landslides) will be investigated. To this end, model approaches are developed at selected focus sites together with local actors in "Natural Labs".

Precipitation Sampler at Naryn (Kyrgyzstan)
Old Rock Slide near Lake Sary-Chelek (Chatkal Range, Kyrgyzstan)
Semi-arid Landscape, Chatkal Range (Kyrgyzstan)
Meteo Station at Lake Sary-Chelek (Chatkal Range, Kyrgyzstan)
Stream Flow Measurement at River Xodsha Ata (Chatkal Range, Kyrgyzstan)

In particular, the project will focus on coordinating and expanding monitoring activities and involving / training students from Kyrgyzstan (e.g. via two summer schools) and engaging local citizens through Citizen Science projects and local education centers. The work is divided into six work packages, in which the project partners (GFZ Potsdam, CAIAG Bishkek, UCA-MSRI Bishkek, Slavonian University Bishkek, State Agency for Environmental Protection and Forestry under the Government of the Kyrgyz Republic, Bishkek) participate to a variable extent, depending on the existing specialization.

Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), 01DK17049


Jens Mingram
Dr. Jens Mingram
Climate Dynamics and Landscape Evolution
Building C, Room 323
14473 Potsdam
+49 331 288-1334