In order to raise awareness about the importance of the Regional Circular and Ecological Sphere (Regional-CES) approach in addressing current and future climate issues, the Kansai Research Centre (KRC) of the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES) and the Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change Research (APN) jointly organised the 1st National Workshop in the Philippines on this topic, titled “Building Climate Resiliency through Linking Rural-Urban Plans and Priorities” on 17 and 18 February 2022.
The workshop was conducted as part of the first Joint Scoping Project between IGES and APN, along with the University of the Philippines Los Baños Interdisciplinary Studies Center for Integrated Natural Resources and Environment Management (UPLB-INREM), led by Dr. Juan M. Pulhin, as the local partner.
Specifically, the objectives of the workshop were to (1) examine the CES concept and its applicability in the country context, (2) improve the CES framework based on the situation and realities on the ground in the Philippines, and (3) identify potential entry points by which some elements of the framework can be integrated into the Philippines setting.
At the workshop, representing IGES, Prof. Kazuhiko Takeuchi, IGES President, gave a keynote speech on the Regional-CES concept and key elements. Dr. Bijon Kumer Mitra, Deputy-Director of the Integrated Sustainability Center, and also the Adaptation and Water Unit, made a presentation about on-going Regional-CES initiatives and the CES-Asia Consortium; Dr. Satoshi Kojima, Program Director of KRC, introduced the scoping project details, moderated one of the break-out sessions and provided a workshop summary; and Ms. Mika Tachibana, Policy Researcher at KRC, briefly summarized the first day. From APN, Mr. Yoichi Toyama, Director of the APN, offered opening and closing remarks; and Ms. Christmas Uchiyama, Program Officer for Knowledge Management and Scientific Affairs, gave a presentation that reviewed Regional-CES-related projects, and also moderated several sessions.
There was a total of approximately 520 participants during the two-day workshop, representing central and local government agencies, international organizations, universities, research institutes, private organizations, and companies. The workshop successfully encouraged active discussion among participants and generated momentum for promoting the Regional CES approach in the Philippines.
Additional national workshops to explore the potential for Regional-CES will be conducted in Thailand and Vietnam later this year, and hopefully followed by its introduction in other countries in the future.