Dipesh Chapagain

Research themes
  • Environmental and climate change
Research countries
  • Germany
  • Nepal
Research projects

Human death and economic losses due to climatic disasters are increasing globally and the impacts relative to the country's economy are higher in low-income countries. Yet, the spatiotemporal trend and the cause thereof are still poorly understood. Several studies argue that the increase in impacts so far is due to the growth in population and wealth exposed to the hazards, and the role of climate change is not evident. Others observed a decreasing vulnerability, potentially due to economic growth, disaster risk reduction (DRR) and climate change adaptation, which could have counter-balanced the effect of climate change. Importantly, the current findings are mostly from cross-country studies or developed countries. Low-income countries like Nepal are poorly represented in existing analysis, and in particular, there is a lack of information at the local scale.


This study will first map the high risk and vulnerable areas to climatic disaster in Nepal and provide new insights for DRR and adaptation planning and monitoring. Disaster losses normalized by the exposure at the local scale will be estimated as a proxy of vulnerability. Secondly, it will study the attribution of observed climatic disaster impacts to indicators of climatic hazards, exposure, vulnerability and DRR and adaptation. Finally, this study will estimate future risks of climatic disaster impacts in different future scenarios. Regional Climate Models (RCMs) based climate indicators scenarios in combination with socio-economic scenarios will be used to estimate the risks of losses in the Karnali river basin in the short and (2030) and mid-term (2050) future.

Professional experience

06/2022 - 08/2022: Young Scientists Summer Program, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), Laxenburg, Austria

01/2020 - Present: Doctoral Student, Center for Development Research, University of Bonn, Germany

11/2018 - 12/2019: Doctoral Student, Institute of Development Research and Development Policy, Ruhr University Bochum, Germany

08/2017 – 02/2018: Research Analyst, Climate Analytics, Berlin, Germany

03/2016 – 05/2017: International Climate Protection Fellow, Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, Germany

04/2015 – 12/2015: Climate Finance Consultant, United Nations Development Programme, Kathmandu, Nepal

09/2013 – 03/2015: Programme Officer, OXFAM, Kathmandu, Nepal

07/2011 – 08/2013: Programme Coordinator, Clean Energy Nepal, Kathmandu, Nepal


Master of Science in Environmental Science (2014), Tribhuvan University, Nepal

Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science (2009), Tribhuvan University, Nepal


Climate Change Adaptation; Adaptation Needs, Costs & Finance; Disaster Risk Management; Climate Impacts & Vulnerability Assessment; Risk & Resilience Analysis

Thesis title

Detection and attribution of spatiotemporal trends of climatic disaster mortality in Nepal

Doctoral research funded by

Doctoral Scholarship of the Heinrich Böll Foundation

Supervisors of
doctoral work


Chapagain, D., L. Bharati and C. Borgemeister.  2022.  Declining vulnerability but rising impacts: the trends of climatic disasters in Nepal.  Regional Environmental Change, 55   . (Open Access)   Further Information
Watkiss, P., Savvidou, G., Pauw, P., & Chapagain, D..  2022.  Chapter 3: Global progress on adaptation financing in developing countries.  Adaptation Gap Report 2022: Too Little, Too Slow – Climate adaptation failure puts world at risk. United Nations Environment Program.   17-24.  (Open Acess)  Further Information


Chapagain, D., S. Dhaubanjar, L. Bharati.  2021.  Unpacking future climate extremes and their sectoral implications in western Nepal.  Climatic Change, 168   . (Open Access)   Further Information
Watkiss P., D. Chapagain, P. Pauw and G. Savvidou.  2021.  Chapter 4 Global progress on adaptation finance.  Adaptation Gap Report 2021: The gathering storm – Adapting to climate change in a post-pandemic world. United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).   27-36.  (Open Acess)  Further Information


Chapagain, D., F. Baarsch, M. Schaeffer and S. D’haen.  2020.  Climate change adaptation costs in developing countries: insights from existing estimates..  Climate and Development, 12 (10)   : 934-942   . (Open Access)   Further Information


Chapagain, D..  2011.  Assessment of climate change impacts on Large Cardamom and proposed adaptation measures in the eastern hills of Nepal.  Understanding climate change impacts in Nepal: Some Case Studies, Nepal Academy of Science and Technology, : 31-41   .


Chapagain, D., Bharati, L., Mechler, R., KC, S., Pflug, G., & Borgemeister, C..  Understanding the role of climate change in disaster mortality: Empirical evidence from the Global South.  . Further Information

Additionals, Curriculum Vitae
and Downloads

Dipesh Chapagain

Junior Researcher

Department :
ZEF C: Department of Ecology and Natural Resources Management