CCARPH Project Leader and Principal Investigator Dr. Emma Porio – along with Joy Rocamora (CCARPH Research Associate), Patty Ayo (CCARPH Research Assistant), and Joshua Cabal (CCARPH Research Assistant) – attended the First Regional Workshop on Circulating and Ecological Sphere (R-CES) Approach for Re-designing the City Regions Resilient last 20-21 May 2021. This was carried out through a partnership between the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES), START International (Global Change Systems for Analysis, Research, and Training), Thammasat University, and the Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology.
The conference brought together representatives of government and academic institutions from South Asia and Southeast Asia to discuss sustainability challenges, and how to address them through integrating social, environmental, and economic considerations within a city-region — the Regional/Local Circulating and Ecological Sphere (R/L-CES) approach.
On Day 1 of the workshop, Dr. Porio gave an overview of Pasig, Metro Manila, presenting the context of the city, its resource and environmental challenges, the responses to those challenges, as well as potential areas for implementation of the CES approach. Pasig City was chosen for the presentation because of the its partnership with CCARPH, particularly with the science-tech capacity-building program; this program supports the implementation of the FEWS (food, energy, and water security)-Nexus for Urban Resilience Program in Pasig City’s Rainforest Park and partner technical universities and science high schools (in partnership with Angono and other Laguna Lakeside Towns and their LGUs/CBOs).
Other presenters from different countries in South/Southeast Asia were Dr. Humayun Kabir (Gazipur City, Bangladesh), Dr. Leishipem Khamrang (Thimphu City, Bhutan), Dr. Hendricus Andy Simarmata (Depok City, Indonesia), Dr. Sony Baral (Pokhara Metropolitan City, Nepal), Dr. Anurudda Karunarathna (Greater Kandy Region, Sri Lanka), Dr. Wijitbusaba Marome (Udon Thani City, Thailand), and Mr. Song Toan Pham Phu (Hoi An City, Vietnam).
On Day 2, participants were divided into two breakout rooms (South Asia and Southeast Asia) where representatives from each country ranked which major challenges/issues of their region need prioritization of the CES approach. Afterwards, participants discussed proposals on how to advance the CES approach in Asian city regions given each country’s context. IGES aims that this transdisciplinary approach engages local researchers and local government representatives to work together for sustainable urban-rural development.