Erasmus+ Capacity Building in Asia for Resilient EducaTion (CABARET)

Through Charlotte Kendra Gotangco (Dept. of Environmental Science) and Crisanto Lopez (Dept. of Biology), the Ateneo de Manila University is part of a network of EU and Asian universities under an Erasmus+ funded project called CABARET (Capacity Building in Asia for Resilient Education).

PROJECT DESCRIPTION:

CABARET aims to build capacity for international and regional cooperation between Higher Education Institutes (HEIs) in Asia and Europe, and among Asian HEIs themselves, to improve Multi Hazard Early Warning (MHEW) and increase disaster resilience among coastal communities. In doing so, CABARET focuses on a subject area and a world region not sufficiently addressed by projects already being funded under previous schemes.
CABARET will address the cognitive and normative challenges in positioning early warning and preparedness in the wider trajectories of social change in societies and communities at risk. It is an imperative to take an integrated and holistic approach to early warnings for multiple hazards and risks tailored to user needs across sectors. The capacity development programme for regional cooperation in MHEW we propose is primarily targeted at academics at any stage of their career at partner HEIs, and other HEIs in the region. The overall focus is “International cooperation at the regional level' towards the development of enhanced regional MHEW for increased coastal resilience.

The programme will strengthen relations between higher education and the vulnerable coastal communities (the wider economic and social environment). Academics, as well as technical and management staff, at partner HEIs and beyond will benefit through enhanced capacities for scientific cooperation and knowledge transfer, a better understanding of regional gaps and priorities, greater mobility among higher education institutes in the region, and improved partnerships with socio-economic actors within vulnerable coastal communities. CABARET will benefit the HEIs from partner countries, their higher education institutions and systems. Via the online capacity building platform, benefits can also be reached by other HEIs in partner countries, other HEIs in the region and beyond.

The target groups will benefit from being engaged in a multidisciplinary and multi-sectoral environment, with a mix of participants, including users of potential HE outcomes, to drive lateral thinking and radical approaches to address major regional challenges in MHEW, whether they be related to policy, research or education. It will enable HEIs to be more responsive to the needs in their own countries, in particular those of vulnerable coastal communities, but also participate in the global agenda towards reducing disaster risk, while strengthening the scientific impact and competitiveness of Asian HEIs.

PROJECT ACTIVITIES:

The First Steering Committee Meeting, hosted by the University of Moratuwa, was held in Colombo, Sri Lanka last March 2017. This served as a venue for project partners to discuss the scope and framework of analysis. This event was followed by the development of comprehensive scoping reports on the status of MHEWs and coastal resilience at the country and regional levels. These reports, which were presented and discussed during the Second Steering Committee Meeting in Santander, Spain, served as the basis for further designing and refining project activities to address specific gaps, to enhance partners strengths, and to take advantage of oppotunities. This second meeting was hosted by Instituto de Hidráulica Ambiental "IH Cantabria" last September 2017. The Third Steering Committee Meeting will be held in Kandy, Sri Lanka, in March 2018, hosted by the University of Peradeniya.

Dr. Crisanto Lopez (Biology), Dr. Kendra Gotangco (ES) and Ms. Jairus Josol (ES)
representing the Ateneo de Manila University at the Second Steering Committee held at IH Cantabria