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5 Apr 2016 | News

China and ICIMOD’s Growing Alliance

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Strategic Cooperation between NSFC and ICIMOD

The bilateral workshop ‘NSFC-ICIMOD Strategic Cooperation’ was held 31 March – 1 April following a memorandum of understanding signed between National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC) and the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) during an earlier board meeting in Kunming. The workshop marked a ground breaking collaboration between China and ICIMOD with the outcome to provide substantial funding support to work with ICIMOD on mountain research of the HKH region. The NSFC, a highly prestigious organisation, provides funding opportunities for scientific research to Chinese scientists on a competitive basis to work with ICIMOD and partners. Prof. Liu Congqiang, Vice President of NSFC said the workshop provided a key platform to forge long-term strategic cooperation in identifying matching interests between NSFC and ICIMOD research areas in strengthening multi-national cooperation. The NSFC funding scheme is a mechanism to support interdisciplinary and integrated research. Funding will be available from 2016 onwards.

More than 30 renowned Chinese scientists and scholars representing various academic and research institutions in China, presented different topics related to sustainable development of the HKH region — a priority of  the “One Belt One Road” initiative of China.

David Molden, Director General of ICIMOD, expressed his thanks and appreciations to NSFC and said the workshop marked a new beginning of China-ICIMOD cooperation.

‘Scientific research is an important ingredient in supporting evidence-based policy and practice’, Molden said. ‘Research opportunities will provide avenues to inject new ideas and to integrate knowledge for sustainable mountain development’.

CN-ICIMOD Steering Committee Meeting chaired by Prof. CUI Peng, Secretary General, CN-ICIMOD on 29th March 2016 in Chengdu, China)

China-ICIMOD Steering Committee Meeting

From the signing of the Partnership Agreement between the China-International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (CN-ICIMOD Committee) and ICIMOD during the board meeting in Kunming in November, the first ever CN-ICIMOD Steering Committee meeting was held in Chengdu on 29 March 2016. The meeting emphasised cooperation, coordination and co-design between ICIMOD and China activities to enhance the partnership between the two.

Wang Zhenyu, Director of Bureau of International Cooperation, welcomed the participants, The Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) said that the CN-ICIMOD is an open platform facilitated by CAS, and will bring together a network of cooperation partners in China supportive of ICIMOD’s mission and vision. David Molden, Director General of ICIMOD said the meeting was an important milestone improving coordination and increasing ownership and visibility of ICIMOD’s activities in China and thanked CAS for their continuing support.

The meeting deliberated on individual and joint roles and responsibilities between the two organisations to improve: regular communication, exchange and sharing of information through respective websites and networks; and introducing a CN-ICIMOD newsletter both in English and Chinese to include the China-ICIMOD Partnership Report for wider circulation. Other joint activities included: the facilitation of ICIMOD activities in China, capacity building activities, exchange of staff and faculty, fellowship opportunities in China, and providing linkages to emerging partnerships. The next CN-ICIMOD Steering Committee will be held at ICIMOD in Kathmandu during in the spring of 2017.

Prof. Lou, Vice President of Sichuan University and Dr. David Molden, Director General of ICIMOD at the Institute of Disaster Management and Reconstruction Centre

Collaboration in DRR and Reconstruction with the Sichuan University

A delegation led by David Molden, Director General of ICIMOD visited the Institute of Disaster Management and Reconstruction Centre of the Sichuan University. The delegation was welcomed by Prof. Lou, Vice President, and officials of Sichuan University. Lou said earlier in the month, K P Oli, Prime Minister of Nepal, had also visited the Centre related to activities regarding the Nepal Reconstruction Authority.

Areas identified for activities under the collaboration are based on mutual activities of interests and priorities, particularly joint learning, exchange and working closely in the field of disaster risk reduction, disaster management, and reconstruction. Areas of cooperation include earthquake reconstruction, and a Himalayan University Consortium (HUC) partnership and mutual exchange of faculty and students. Sichuan University is also establishing a Pan Himalayan Center for Cultural and Religious Research.  ICIMOD will look for links where possible to feature the social and cultural aspects of the respective regional member countries, as well as share knowledge and promote the HKH region to a wider audience.

During the visit, the ICIMOD team also visited the Institute of Biology and shared experiences on ongoing collaboration and expressed their interest to strengthen cooperation between the two organisations.

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