University of Heidelberg

Abhimanyu Pandey, M.A.

Abhimanyu Pandey, M.A. Abhimanyu Pandey, M.A., MPhil (Cantab)


  • Doctoral Student

Contact information

Research foci

Trans-Himalayas, borderlands, anthropology of connectivity and roads, cultural ecosystem services, institutions and governance, tradition and modernity in the Himalayas

Short Biography

Abhimanyu Pandey, an Indian national, is a doctoral candidate in Anthropology at the South Asia Institute. The title of his research project is ‘Materialities of Connectivity: an Anthropology of Roads, Development Narratives, and Everyday Lives in Himalayan Borderlands’. Prior to commencing his doctoral studies, he worked as a social scientist at the International Center for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) in Kathmandu, Nepal, from 2014 till 2017. He holds an MPhil in Development Studies from the University of Cambridge, and an MA in Sociology from the Delhi School of Economics, University of Delhi. He has been the recipient of an EU grant for short term ethnographic research in Copenhagen (2011); a Commonwealth Cambridge Shared Scholarship (2012-2013); a Charles Wallace short-term research fellowship (2015), a Sigrid Rausing grant from the Department of Anthropology, University of Cambridge (2016), and a DAAD doctoral grant (2017 onwards). He has conducted anthropological and qualitative research in Bhutan, China, Denmark, India, and Nepal.


  • Pandey, Abhimanyu. 2019. 2.3.2: Changing Socio-Cultural Situation. In: Yanfen Wang, Wu Ning, Clemens Kunze, Ruijin Long, Manfred Perlik. Drivers of Change to Mountain Sustainability in the Hindu Kush Himalaya. In: Philipus Wester, Arabinda Mishra, Aditi Mukherji, Arun Bhakta Shrestha. (eds) The Hindu Kush Himalaya Assessment. Cham: Springer
  • Bubriski, Kevin and Abhimanyu Pandey. 2018. Kailash Yatra: a long walk to Mt. Kailash through Humla. New Delhi: Penguin.
  • Pandey, Abhimanyu, Nawraj Pradhan, Swapnil Chaudhari, and Rucha Ghate. "Withering of traditional institutions? An institutional analysis of the decline of migratory pastoralism in the rangelands of the Kailash Sacred Landscape, western Himalayas." Environmental Sociology 3, no. 1 (2017): 87-100. Accessible at
  • Pandey, Abhimanyu, Rajan Kotru, Nawraj Pradhan. 2016. Kailash Sacred Landscape: bridging cultural heritage, conservation and development through a trans-boundary landscape approach’. In Bas Verschuuren and Naoya Furuta (Eds.) Asian Sacred Natural Sites: Philosophy and practice in protected areas and conservation. Oxford: Earthscan from Routlege. Pp. 145-158.
  • Pandey, Abhimanyu, Rajan Kotru, Nawraj Pradhan. 2016. A Framework for the Assessment of Cultural Ecosystem Services of Sacred Natural Sites in the Hindu Kush Himalayas. Working paper – 2016/8. Kathmandu: ICIMOD. Accessible at
  • Pandey, Abhimanyu. 2011. An anthropology of well-being in Christiania. In Proceedings of the Final Conference on the European Studies Programme of the University of Delhi (November, 2011). New Delhi: University of Delhi.


  • ‘Dynamic borderlands: exploring historic and contemporary cultural and economic linkages between the Himalayas and the Tibetan Plateau.’
    • Presentation made at the ‘Heidelberg Dialogue on International Security 2018: Limits - Conflicts, Clarification, Consequences’, hosted by Forum für internationale Sicherheit Heidelberg e.V., Germany in November 2018.
    • Presentation made at the DAAD-Stipendiatentreffen für Sozialwissenschaften, hosted by Bergen University, Germany in April 2018.
  • ‘Developing a framework to assess the cultural ecosystem services of sacred natural sites in the Himalayas’. ‘Brown Bag’ presentation made at the International Center for Integrated Mountain Development, Kathmandu, in September 2016.
  • ‘Corridors of passage or productive corridors? Rethinking Himlayan corridors through the experience of the Shaukas of Kumaon and Far Western Nepal.’ Paper presented at the 14th Seminar of the International Association for Tibetan Studies (IATS), hosted by Bergen University, Norway in June 2016.
  • ‘Assessing and harnessing trans-boundary cultural and historic ties to integrate conservation and development: case studies from ICIMOD’s trans-boundary programme.’ Presentation made at the Mongolian and Inner Asia Studies Unit (MIASU), of the Department of Anthropology, Cambridge University, in June 2016.
  • ‘In the shadow of Mt Kailash: The politics of visual constructions in a trans-boundary cultural landscapes’. Presentation made as a part of the ‘Visual Constructions of South Asia Series’ at Center for South Asian Studies, University of Cambridge, in November 2015.
  • ‘Heritage Valuation and its role in the Kailash Sacred Landscape Conservation and Development Initiative’. Presentation made at the KSLCDI Stakeholders’ Workshop for Heritage Tourism in Lijiang Old Town, Yunnan Province, China, in November 2014.
  • ‘The Cry of the Rasta Man: the Innovative Use of Black Histories and Folk Traditions in Bob Marley’s Music’. Paper presented at the 4th International Folklore Congress organised by the Nepali Folklore Congress at Kathmandu, Nepal, in August 2012.
  • ‘Negotiating Change: the Shifting Contours of the Object, Field and Method in a Short-term Qualitative Project in Ballimaran’. Co-authored with A.J. Dalmia, V.Upraity and S.K. Bhangu. Paper presented at the biennial Research Scholars’ workshop in the Department of Sociology, Delhi School of Economics, University of Delhi, in February 2012.
  • ‘An Anthropology of Well-being in Christiania‘. Paper presented at the Final Conference of the European Studies Programme of the University of Delhi in November 2011, at DU.
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