The participants of the 2019 PSSN conference held in Puerto Princesa, Palawan.
Recently awarded 2019 Outstanding Young Scientist Dr. Rico Ancog served as plenary speaker of two separate scientific meetings in the first two weeks of July 2019. The assistant professor and UP Scientist III of SESAM discussed topics on inter- and trans-disciplinal science, and environmental governance and valuation imperatives related to Invasive Alien Species in the Asia-Pacific region.
The first conference was the 19thInternational Conference on Nature Studies of the Philippine Society for the Study of Nature (PSSN) held last 2-6 July 2019 at Palawan State University, Puerto Princesa, Palawan, Philippines. In support to the conference’s theme “Nature, People, and Development: Making Connection Matters,” Dr. Ancog discussed a paper defining transdisciplinal approach to effectively link various sustainability dimensions across the project development and project evaluation phases. He discussed the importance of crafting a inter- and –transdisciplinal praxis, along with systematic methodological framework that would effectively operationalize the formulation and implementation of a research project related to environmental problem. Overall, the well-attended conference was instrumental for attendees to exchange information and discuss potential collaborations in the future for a deeper understanding of the connection between nature, people and development. In addition, the paper of Mr. Christian Cuevas, a recent MS graduate of SESAM and advisee of Dr. Ancog was also presented. It tackled the use of choice experiment (CE) method in the estimation of tourists’ willingness to pay for the recreational serve of Mt. Macolot in Cuenca, Batangas, Philippines.
Dr. Ancog was also invited to also serve as a plenary speaker during the R&D Conference on Invasive Alien Species (IAS) Management and Biosecurity Measures in the Asia Pacific Region held on 8-12July 2019 at Diamond Hotel in Manila, Philippines. The IAS has been considered as among the major threats to biodiversity such that the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) has called on parties to find mechanisms for the introduction, control and eradication of alien species. Organized by the Ecosystems Research and Development Bureau (ERDB), the research arm of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), the IAS conference aimed to enhance the R&D partnerships and cooperation between and among Asia-Pacific countries, better understanding of the institutional and capacity developments necessary for an effective IAS management, and in strengthening strategies and policies to address issues on IAS.
Dr. Ancog proposed a general framework to determine the appropriate method to measure the spread dynamics of an IAS, and from there elaborate on some facilitative to sufficient conditions to strengthen management of IAS. Joining Dr. Ancog are Jomari Christian Baggay and Stellah Aclan, university research associates at SESAM, who also presented a paper on some IAS control strategies in a national park in the Philippines. Along with Dr. Leonardo M. Florece and Dr. Ancog, they comprise the research team of a SESAM-implemented project on IAS in Allah Valley Protected Landscape (AVPL) in Mindanao funded by the Foreign Assisted and Species Projects Services (FASPS) of DENR.
Overall, the papers presented during the plenary talks of Dr. Ancog were products of research projects implemented by SESAM signifying the School’s active research culture, as well as its aim of ensuring that its research results are disseminated to the widest possible, especially government regulatory agencies.