LOICZ Regional Node South Asia
Coordinator of LOICZ South Asia Regional Node
Open University of Sri Lanka
He has been involved in LOICZ-related research since being the Co-Investigator of a South Asian regional project on material fluxes to the coastal zone and their impacts – which ran from 2001 to 2004. He has been a member of the LOICZ SSC (2004 – 2006) and is also the Chairman of the Sri Lankan National Committee on LOICZ.
ABOUT THE LOICZ SOUTH ASIA REGIONAL NODE
The LOICZ South AsiaRegional Node was established in December, 2004 under a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the LOICZ IPO and the National Science Foundation Sri Lanka (NSFSL), which is the host of the Regional Node. The Regional Node was established to maintain and strengthen the regional network of coastal scientists that had been developed through regional workshops and a regional research project. These activities were conducted with the support of LOICZ and institutions such as APN and START that fund regional research into climate change issues.
The principal task of the node is to develop and implement a regional strategy for LOICZ that is aligned with the programs and initiatives of the IPO while reflecting regional and national needs. Coordination with and adding value to existing regional and national programs and projects is seen as a key strategy to achieve these goals. The LOICZ IPO provides seed funding for scientific and networking activities while the NSFSL provides office space, communication and computer facilities and administrative support.
The Regional Node functions under the direction of a Regional Committee, which consists of scientists representing disciplines relevant to LOICZ, important regional institutions and countries in the region. It is intended that the committee, which was formally inaugurated in late 2007, should interact with the Regional Node in the same way as the Scientific Steering Committee of LOICZ interacts with the LOICZ IPO. The committee will function primarily as a "virtual” committee.
The Regional Node maintains close links with other regional and national committees and other bodies representing other global change projects. In Sri Lanka, the NSFSL has established a Sri Lankan Committee on LOICZ. This committee, which works with the National IGBP Committee, has the task of establishing the LOICZ scientific agenda in the country. Members of the LOICZ network have agreed to develop similar country networks at a formal or informal level, with links to the national committees of IGBP and IHDP that will serve a similar function.
Over the last three years the Regional Node has organized regional workshops, developed a regional network of coastal scientists, and initiated links with many regional and national organizations and projects. The Regional Node maintains close links to the LOICZ Southeast Asia Regional Node and the two nodes have collaborated on several workshops and made it possible for scientists from one nodal network to attend workshops organized by the other node.
In 2007, the Regional Node began the implementation of a regional project entitled "Developing an Integrated Framework for Science-Policy Interactions towards enhanced Management of Coastal Systems in South Asia”. The project has obtained partial funding from the Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change Research (APN) and the node expects to raise additional funds from regional and national sources.
The project was initiated at a regional workshop that was held in October, 2007, in Male, the Maldives and hosted by the Coastal Zone Management Centre of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC). Twenty one scientists from eighteen institutions in six countries participated in the workshop. The project involves the assessment of coastal change and the consequent impact on people in seven case study sites, four of which are India and one each in Bangladesh, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
The Regional Committee welcomes any scientist or institution that wishes to collaborate in research relevant to the sustainable management of coastal areas in the face of current and potential change. Please contact the Regional Node at