Back to top

About Gender in the Koshi Basin: Photo Story Competition


The Koshi River flows through a rich tapestry of mountains, forests, farmlands and settlements as it winds its way through one of the most diverse landscapes in the Hindu Kush Himalaya (HKH). Plunging through Tibet and Nepal, the river drains into the floodplains of Northern Bihar, transforming local and regional economies along its course. Before it drains into the Bay of Bengal, the river touches countless households that are dependent on the many valuable resources it provides. 

The basin is part of a broader complex system that is currently under stress from a number of factors. In addition to rapid population growth and urbanization, climate change impacts are wreaking havoc on the basin’s freshwater ecosystems. People residing in the basin face a number of challenges, ranging from water availability to disaster risk and changing livelihoods. 

Theme: Gender in the Koshi Basin

Gender relations in the Koshi River basin are not only shaped by inequalities between men and women, but also complicated by caste, ethnicity, class, and age, among other factors. Gender and social relations between and among women and men are influenced by numerous factors that interact with each other and also influence each other. Some of these are caste, class, ethnicity, profession, education, and marital status. Unequal gender and social relations are characterized by women’s lack of access to and control over resources, limited mobility, low decision-making power, and participation in institutions (both social and political). All these result in reduced capacity and higher vulnerability of women in the face of climate change. Despite these challenges, some men and women have adapted and overcome these gender and social barriers.

The ‘Gender in the Koshi basin' photo story competition aims to bring attention to these complex issues through stories that depict these dynamics and the human face of these challenges in the basin. 


We invite submissions of photo stories that deal with the gender aspects of   livelihoods, agriculture, disaster, natural resources, and adaptation. Each photo should be accompanied by a short caption, stating the place the photo was taken and any other relevant information. 

A photo story is a set or series of images and accompanying captions that tell a cohesive story when taken together as a whole. Photos and captions should complement each other and each individual photo/caption should contribute some value to the overall story and theme of the photo story.

For the purposes of this competition, each photo story entry must consist of three to eight images with captions and an accompanying story/essay of a maximum 300 words.


The top three photo stories will be selected for prize winnings of USD 200 each. The remaining photo stories will receive honourable mentions and certificates. Selected photo stories will be featured on the Koshi Basin Initiative website.