SUMERNET researchers join seminar in celebration of ten years of SEI’s Asia Centre in Bangkok

On Monday 17th November in Bangkok, SEI Asia will hold a 10th anniversary seminar as a retrospective of the Asia Centre’s achievements and to share ideas and perspectives on the Centre’s current and future work.

SEI’s Asia Centre has been the Secretariat of SUMERNET since the network was launched in 2005.  Now in its third phase (2013-2017), SUMERNET continues to be a key area of the Asia Centre’s work

 The 10th anniversary seminar will feature some of the SUMERNET researchers as panelists. They will join SEI Asia’s many close partners and collaborators in the past ten years including Thailand’s Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Chulaongkorn University and other institutions, and government donors including Swedish International Development Cooperation, and the Australian government.

In a reflection of the importance of the Mekong Region for the Asia Centre, the seminar will feature two panels directly relating to the Mekong Region: 1. “Development Cooperation in the Mekong Region” and “Bridging Science and Policy in the Mekong Region”.

Dr. Wijarn Simachaya, Deputy-Permanent Secretary of Thailand’s Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, a long-time collaborator with SUMERNET work on research and policy, will be addressing the opening session.

Other SUMERNET partners will be speaking in the two Mekong panels and also another panel on “Water, Energy and Food”. (Please see attached seminar booklet with agenda with bios of speakers.)

As SUMERNET continues to strengthen its network in the Mekong Region, it is also seeking new partnerships. One fruitful area for research and policy collaboration is Myanmar. This is also because, in 2014, the Asia Centre formally began work in Myanmar by signing an agreement with the country’s Directorate of Water Resources and Improvement of River Systems to support participatory water resources planning and assessment in the Ayeyarwady River Basin. 

Called the Ayeyarwady Futures, the programme aims to support sustainable development through evidence-based participatory planning processes around the Ayeyarwady River, Myanmar’s largest river and most important commercial waterway.  At least two persons from Myanmar are speakers at the seminar while several more are expected to participate.

The 10th Anniversary Seminar will provide a valuable opportunity for SUMERNET partners to share their lessons and experiences as well as provide perspectives for the strategy and work of the Asia Centre and SUMERNET in the future.

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