Program for Capacity Building in
Global Water-Environmental Engineering
A total of approximately 96 people participated in the symposium. Those in partner business, academic agencies concerned with the Program and the Program students took part from the Japanese side. The Thai participants included the members of the teaching staff and students of Kasetsart University, and officials to drainage and sewerage administration.
Focus was placed on the technology and policy concerning water resources use, water treatment and water environment under climate change. Japanese and Thai business, academic and government people concerned gave presentations and exchanged views concerning the solutions of various problems and the direction of research in preparation for the future. Various places in Thailand suffered heavy damage from large-scale floods due to the heavy rain which had continued since July 2011. In October, the situation became more serious. The industrial complex in which Japanese companies located was also hit by successive flooding. Thus, disaster measures were taken up as a main topic of this symposium.
At the start of the symposium, Associate Prof., Dr. Thanya Kiatiwat, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering, Kasetsart University, as the host, gave an address expressing his deepest gratitude for the co-organizing of this symposium, through the progress of their internationalization. Strengthening of the industry-academia-government collaboration between Japan and Thailand in a water environmental arena is important. He wished got the success of the symposium and believed that this symposium was a good opportunity to promote prospective relations between the two universities.
In response, Professor Tadashi Yamada, Faculty of Science and Engineering, who is responsible for the implementation of the Program, said in his address that the 2nd Japan -China-Korea Summit held on October 2009 was the beginning of this program and it is tackling capacity building in global-water environmental engineering.
He also told how overseas students from consortium universities in China, Korea and Vietnam, and Japanese students improve together in study under the Program, and he expected enrollment to the Program of a student from Kasetsart University to be realized at the next term. He said that disaster management experts were invited to our party this time to consider the deluge disaster in Thailand several years ago. He concluded his greetings by saying that the fruitful discussion could lead to proposals which would contribute to future flood control measures in Thailand.
In subsequent keynote speeches and presentations, Japanese and Thai lecturers discussed the current issues and solutions provided by the latest technical information.
Thai lecturers gave presentations concerning waste water management in the Bangkok Metropolitan area, disaster risk and technology, remote sensing applications in hydrology and water resources, application of membrane technology to municipal solid waste leachate treatment, a development of a community information system concerning floods.
Japanese counterparts presented papers on disaster reduction and water environment resolution under uncertain conditions, and a numerical estimate of water disaster risk of low-lying basin, technical policies for safety and environment on airports in coastal areas, assessment study on climate change impact on water resources, a watershed modeling to visualize spatio-temporal structure in surface and subsurface interaction, methods for monitoring levees to predict eventual erosion/seepage failure, the technology of water purification for river polluted with discharge water from a paper mill factory, and “Water level gauge” and “Water gate opening indicator” for enhancement of irrigation facilities management and preventing flood disasters The introduction of an example of measures or technology that was strongly conscious of the deluge disaster in Thailand in particular seemed to draw the attention of Thai participants. Many questions were raised about specific matters such as the number to adopt the technology and the cost of development. Moreover, Japanese participants also raised many questions such as close cooperation among relevant organizations in Thailand for effective flood control measures.
With disaster prevention and disaster reduction the keyword, the symposium provided a useful opportunity for information exchange to consider research exchange and technical cooperation in the field of water environment between the two countries and future directions to take. It also motivated the Thai university to promote handling of the water-related issues through the Program.