11 July 2018, Bangkok — Government officials, scientists and representatives of observer organizations from 24 countries within and outside the Asia-Pacific region meet at Bangkok today at the 23rd Joint Intergovernmental Meeting and Scientific Planning Group Meeting of the Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change Research (APN). The meeting to be held on 11-12 July 2018 is hosted by the National Research Council of Thailand (NRCT), the research arm of the Cabinet of the Thai Government, which also appoints the national focal point to represent Thailand in APN.
The Meeting is the main decision-making body of APN, and will consider and approve the work programme for fiscal year 2018 that has started on July 2018. This will include the approval of funding for more than 20 regional research and capacity development projects selected through a competitive process open to all member countries across the region. The areas of these projects are: climate change and variability; biodiversity and ecosystems; natural resource utilization; changes in different geographical domains; and disaster risk reduction.
The work programme is also expected to include APN-led activities that is well-positioned at the interface between science and policy to support the efforts of member countries in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and various commitments under the Paris Agreement, and other international processes focusing on global environmental change.
“There is increasing importance for climate adaptation and enhanced climate resilience, particularly in cities, due to the increasing rate of urbanization. Networks such as APN that link science and policy can contribute to generating solutions to address climate change issues”, said Professor Sirirurg Songsivilai, Secretary-General of NRCT, in his opening address. “With this in mind, it is indeed a great pleasure for NRCT to host this meeting on this important occasion”, he added.
“Through this important intergovernmental meeting, we hope to develop APN’s future so that it is fully working in collaboration with its member countries and cooperating closely with the work of important bodies that serve the policy community such as the IPCC, UNFCCC, UNCBD, UNCSD, IPBES, among others,” said Dr Monthip Sriratana, APN national Focal Point of Thailand and Director of the Climate Change Research Strategy Centre of NRCT, in her welcome remarks.
Mr Seiji Tsutsui, Director of APN Secretariat, followed by saying “As we can see in the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement, all countries are requested to take concrete action to realize sustainable development for all the people living in this world” and “I hope APN will be able to carry on with its important role in transforming global change and sustainability science into solution-oriented knowledge that supports decision- and policy-making and real action for sustainability in the region.”
In addition to deciding on new projects and activities, the meeting is also expected to agree on concrete steps to improve the institutional arrangements of the Network to further increase its effectivity in responding to the needs of its member countries and to enhance the impact of its activities in each member country.
Representatives of the ASEAN Centre for Biodiversity, the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies, the Inter-American Institute for Global Change Research, the Pollution Control Department of Thailand, the Regional Resource Centre for Asia and the Pacific, and the World Climate Research Programme, attended the meeting as observers and will share their views on how to strategically engage with APN and its members in collaborative efforts that complement the experience and resources of the organizations.
In addition, thirteen young researchers based in Thailand are invited to present their research in a poster session themed “Making cities and communities sustainable in the Anthropocene”. The best poster will receive the APN Mitra Award for Global Environment Change.
With a vision to strengthen the capacity of the region to address the challenges of global change and sustainability, APN supports multi-country transdisciplinary research projects that provide underpinning scientific input to the policymaking community. APN also focuses on developing the capacity of individuals and organizations to conduct high-quality research, and on strengthening interactions between the science and policymaking communities to support actionable science and informed decision-making.
(Update 17 July 2018)
The list of approved new projects for Fiscal Year 2018 is available here.
For more information please contact:
Dr Monthip Sriratana, Director of the Climate Change Research Strategy Centre, NRCT, firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr Linda Anne Stevenson, Head, Division of Communication and Scientific Affairs, APN Secretariat, email: email@example.com
Mr Xiaojun Deng, Senior Programme Officer for Communication and Development, email: firstname.lastname@example.org