"International Symposium on Global Environmental Studies Education and Research in Asia" held at Mahidol University in Thailand (13-15 November 2016)
11 Jan 2017
On 13-15 November 2016, Kyoto University and Mahidol University jointly hosted an "International Symposium on Global Environmental Studies Education and Research in Asia", taking place at Mahidol University's Salaya Campus. The 185 participants included students and researchers of the host universities, as well as those from 28 other universities across 14 countries in Asia, Europe, and the United States, and personnel from Japanese Embassy in Thailand, Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) Bangkok office, and Japanese companies in the environmental sector. The symposium was co-organized by the "Kyoto University Environmental Innovator Program -- Cultivating Environmental Leaders across the ASEAN Region" of Japan's education ministry MEXT, and the "Construction of a global environmental study basis through practical approaches based on the Asia Platform" of JSPS' Core-to-Core Program (B).
The three-day symposium started with a pre-workshop "the 11th Inter-University Workshop on Education and Research Collaboration in the Indochina Region" at Hotel Novotel Bangkok. Participants engaged in active discussion in four sessions entitled: 1) Development of International Educational Programs; 2) Possibility of Research and Outreach Activities for Studies on the Connectivity of Hills, Humans and Oceans (CoHHO) through International Cooperation; 3) Progress of International Research Cooperation; and 4) Cooperation between Industry, Government, and Academia.
On the second day, the main symposium took place at Mahidol University's Salaya Campus. In the morning, "Session I: International Collaboration on Research in Global Environmental Studies" was held, where results of the pre-workshop were presented. Young researchers then presented on their research while university students conducted poster presentations. Simultaneously, satellite event "Study at Kyoto University Fair" attracted numerous Thai students interested in studying in Japan.
In the afternoon, "Session II: International Collaboration on Education in Global Environmental Studies" started with opening remarks by the representatives of the host universities: Dr Udom Kachintorn, Mahidol University president, and Dr Masao Kitano, Kyoto University executive vice-president for education, information infrastructure, and evaluation.
A signing ceremony for double degree programs between Kyoto University and its partner universities followed, including the KU Graduate School of Global Environmental Studies signing agreements with Mahidol University and Bogor Agricultural University (Indonesia), and the KU Graduate School of Agriculture (led by Hisashi Miyagawa) with Bogor Agricultural University and Institut Teknologi Bandung (Indonesia). Kyoto University and three partner institutions pledged to promote further international cooperation. Special lectures on international collaboration for education and human resource development were delivered by: Dr Banchong Mahaisavariya, Mahidol University vice president; Dr Kitano, KU EVP; Dr Christa Fittschen, Research Director of the Department of Chemistry, Lille 1 University; and Mr Keisuke Karaki, first secretary of the Embassy of Japan.
The symposium wrapped up with a study tour on the final day, in which participants observed mangrove forest conservation in the vicinity of Bangkok.
The symposium gathered interested members from numerous universities across the globe with which KU has developed cooperation in education and research. As it provided opportunities for active discussion throughout the event, many participants gave positive feedback, recognizing the event's high productivity. In an effort to develop further international collaboration, Kyoto University will co-host the next symposium with Hanoi University of Science and Technology, a KU partner university, to discuss strengthening international cooperation in education and the promotion of collaborative research.
Signing ceremony for double degree programs between Kyoto University and Mahidol University
Study tour to conserved mangroves