University Consortium pushes for collaborative projects on food and nutrition security
Recognizing the importance of attaining food and nutrition security in Southeast Asia, the six member-universities of the Southeast Asian University Consortium for Graduate Education in Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC) have agreed to implement a number of collaborative projects to address this emerging concern in the region.
The said activities which likewise aim to further strengthen the partnership between and among UC members, were presented and approved on 14 November 2014 at the New World Hotel, Makati City, Philippines as part of the 27th UC Executive Board Meeting.
Collaborative activities include the conduct of an annual Postgraduate Course, an annual Graduate Forum, a dual degree undertaking, and research projects on food reserve management and policies, knowledge management on food and nutrition security, human resource development, halal food processing, fruits and vegetable post-harvest improvement, and indigenous crops production. Each research project will be spearheaded by a UC member from among Kasetsart University in Thailand, Institut Pertanian Bogor and Universitas Gadjah Mada in Indonesia, Universiti Putra Malaysia, University of the Philippines Los Baños, and SEARCA, with funding support from the University Consortium, the host university, and other local and international partners. On the other hand, Tokyo University of Agriculture (Tokyo-NODAI) has expressed interest in funding as well as providing expertise (faculty and graduate students) to the researches that are of common interest with the Japanese university.
In the implementation of the said activities, the Executive Board likewise foresees the effective utilization of the UC student and faculty grants. At present, UC offers thesis grants, and student travel grants for research or for credit, while faculty members can apply for travel grants for research or for conference, and a grant for visiting professor for teaching purposes.