IPB University’s SEAMEO BIOTROP Enters New Collaboration for Education with the Philippines

Southeast Asian Regional Center for Tropical Biology (SEAMEO BIOTROP), IPB University and 23 universities from the Philippines are entering a potential partnership in the field of education for Indonesia and the Philippines. In the COVID-19 pandemic situation, the discussion was held online on January 8th, between the Philippines’ delegation which was led by Dr Aldrin Darilag (Commission on Higher Education/CHAD) and accompanied by 23 university board leaders of the Philippines.

While the Indonesian delegates present at the meeting were Prof Arif Satria, IPB University’s Rector and Deputy Supervisor of BIOTROP, accompanied by Director of BIOTROP, Dr Zulhamsyah Imran, Deputy Director of Administration, Dr Perdinan, and a number of researchers, managers, and staff.

As the host of the event, Prof Arif Satria showed his appreciation on the initiation of collaboration between the universities in Indonesia and the Philippines through the coordination of SEAMEO BIOTROP. He conveyed that as a tropical biology center in Southeast Asia, BIOTROP has a strategic role in the exchange of information and transfer of technology, especially for higher education in the Southeast Asia region.

He further explains that Prof Arif Satria recommends the need of a collaboration with the focus of capacity building for the human resources and experts network in Southeast Asia; the management of science and mechanism for various information for tropical biodiversity resources, climate change, and ecotourism; digitalization of learning media to support education for all; leadership forum to influence policies in tropical areas and battle the loss of biodiversity; partnership between the government in Southeast Asia in educational programs in the field of biodiversity; and the public’s participation to conserve biodiversity through local culture and actions.

The recommendation of IPB University’s Rector was warmly welcomed by Dr Darilag from CHAD Philippines who expressed his hopes to build a partnership in the field of tropical biodiversity. This partnership will be realized with the establishment of the Tropical Biology Network for Southeast Asia under the coordination of SEAMEO BIOTROP.

Furthermore, Dr Darilag also conveyed that the collaboration can take place in the form of: Lecturer Training Program, Development of Learning Media, Strengthening of Services, Incubation of Innovation and Patent, and the Increase of Knowledge Exchange between higher education institutions in the Philippines and Indonesia.

In response to the partnership development between the two countries, Dr Zulhamsyah Imran as the Director of SEAMEO BIOTROP, relayed that the collaboration initiative is in line with the mission of SEAMEO BIOTROP. Dr Zulhamsyah explains that SEAMEO BIOTROP is highly aware of the challenges brought by the 4.0 Industry and 5.0 Society, however, for SEAMEO BIOTROP, challenges bring forth huge opportunities to be integrated in the main mandate of the institution which are to develop research, trainings, and information dissemination in the field of Biological Tropics.

Dr Zulhamsyah explains that SEAMEO BIOTROP is ready to synergize their mission with IPB University’s mission, CHED, and the 23 universities which were present during the first virtual meeting to develop the regional BIOTROP program.

As a concrete step in realizing the partnership, discussion forums were held, moderated by Dr Perdinan as the representative of the event organizers. These forums discussed the need for more focused activities on tropical biodiversity, promoting the joining of experts across Southeast Asia and building a network of experts in the field of tropical biology. The participants of the discussion agreed to pursue the partnership in the following activities:

  1. Research activities across borders in both terrestrial and marine fields;
  2. Exchange of experts and/virtual learnings;
  3. Exchange of knowledge and/information for students;
  4. Publication of research results through the BIOTROPIA Journal published by SEAMEO BIOTROP;
  5. The development of education media and curriculum in tropical biodiversity and
  6. The development of Data Center and Knowledge Resource in Tropical Biodiversity.

The discussion ended with the agreement to formulate further technical steps to realize the partnership proposal initiated by SEAMEO BIOTROP of IPB University and the 23 universities in the Philippines which is hoped to be expanded with other countries in the Southeast Asia region.

Published Date : 11-Jan-2021

Resource Person : Prof Arif Satria, Dr Zulhamsyah Imran, Dr Perdinan, Dr Darilag

Keyword : SEAMEO BIOTROP, consortium, biodiversity