Friday, August 23, 2013

UNIGIS at HealthGIS 2013 in Bangkok!

UNIGIS was invited to contribute to a GIScience capacity building workshop at the 5th International  Conference on HealthGIS held in Bangkok, Thailand from 21st to 23rd August, 2013. Dr Shahnawaz (Director UNIGIS S/E Asia) conducted the workshop entitled 'GIScience Education and Training - the Need for Health Professionals' which was attended by more than 30 participants having their disciplinary background in a range of subjects, however a large majority came from various areas of health related fields either by education or by professional engagements.

An extended discussion focussed on the issue that conventionally health professionals are not taught / trained to use geospatial data, technologies and tools. These are becoming increasingly important for understanding the dynamics of several illnesses and diseases. They also expressed that they have rarely come across a GIScience education / training programme designed to fulfĂ­ll the needs of the health professionals.

The overall conclusion of the workshop was that there is a pressing need of developing and introducing short duration GIScience education / training programmes specifically designed for health professionals. A nearly unanimous proposal from the audience suggested that an international organisation like UNIGIS should take initiative in this direction, because it has well established experience of designing, developing and offering innovative online distance learning programmes in GIScience and -Systems.

Monday, August 19, 2013

UNIGIS Week in Kathmandu, Nepal!

UNIGIS@Kathmandu celebrated the 1st year of its inception at Kathmandu Forestry College (KAFCOL) during the week of 12th to 16th August, 2013. The event was inaugurated with a meeting of the Board of Studies attended by Dr. Ramji P. Neupane (KAFCOL President), Dr. Bishnu H. Pandit (KAFCOL Principal), Dr. Krishna P. Poudel (UNIGIS Coordinator) and Dr. Shahnawaz (Director, UNIGIS S/E Asia). The board reviewed the progress of UNIGIS during the last year and appraised the overall strategy for further expansion during the next years.

 Dr. Shahnawaz and Dr. Krishna P. Poudel conducted 2 intensive workshops, including an orientation workshop for 12 new students of the 2nd intake as well as a Project Management and Master Thesis workshop for 2nd year students of the UNIGIS MSc programme.

The event concluded with a meeting of the Instructors of UNIGIS@Kathmandu leading to a vibrant discussion session with the current and incoming UNIGIS students.