iCube calls for more collaboration among research partners

National 1 minute, 57 seconds


THE International Consortium of Universities for the Study of Biodiversity and the Environment (iCube) is looking to broaden its scope by having more collaboration with its research university partners over the next two years.

Associate Professor at the Faculty of Science at Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) said that in the past, UBD has been the chair for the meetings and that a lot of the workshops and training programmes have been carried out in Brunei.

In an interview with The Brunei Times, Dr Kushan U Tennakoon said that he is looking forward to other universities chairing the workshops and training programme, starting with Korea University in February next year. Speaking after the Third iCube Scientific Committee Meeting yesterday, where representatives discussed and planned activities for the next two years, the associate professor said that the workshop titled “Climate Change and Biodiversity: issues for linking natural and social sciences” at Korea University will be the next iCube activity. Dr Kushan, who is also the Director of Kuala Belalong Field Studies Centre, said that it is a good initiative to move the chairmanship around as it brings in more expertise and adds value in terms of mutual collaborations.

He said that apart from one-off workshop and training programmes, there are a lot of mutual and ongoing research projects happening between iCube partners, including UBD. Several examples mentioned by the associate professor included Korea University’s link up with Bonn University for a sociology workshop as well as the linkup between UBD’s IBM-Centre, King’s College London and the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill in the field of hydrology. “It is no longer bilateral, UBD (linking up) with other universities, but universities under the consortium linking up with each other under one umbrella.”

He said that iCube’s objective is “to bring together a core group of research universities from around the globe to achieve general policy directions, decisions and strategic planning related to biodiversity and environmental conservation”.

He said that iCube is not just an active group, but proactive with a lot of mutual interest and is currently moving forward as one.

One of the activities planned during the Third iCube Scientific Committee Meeting yesterday for the next two years include a meeting of iCube’s Governing Board sometimes in the first quarter of next year.

The Brunei Times