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AKAH, MIT and KVA MATx work on voluntary relocation planning in Tajikistan

27 May 2021

To develop solutions to help vulnerable and disaster-affected communities plan for a better future, the Aga Khan Agency for Habitat (AKAH), the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the design firm KVA MATx have collaborated on a case study on voluntary relocation. The partners looked at Basid village, located in the Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Region (GBAO) of Tajikistan, to develop a model for voluntary relocation planning. Building on AKAH’s Habitat Planning Framework and Hazard & Vulnerability Risk Assessments, the AKAH, MIT and KVA MATx team, together with the community, reportedly identified four main challenges: improving access to different areas; providing a water supply; enriching the land through soil and vegetation conservation; and creating safe village layout options. Onno Ruhl, AKAH General Manager, stated: “As natural disasters become more frequent and severe due to climate change, solutions to help communities rebuild and, when necessary, relocate are essential.  The AKAH Habitat Planning Framework gives agency to displaced people to plan for a safer and better future.”