Education and research are the most severely affected sectors due to the latest worldwide pandemic of COVID-19. Universities and other higher educational institutes had to face an unprecedented challenge including switching their coursework method from in-classroom to online. While universities across the world are individually exerting efforts to cope with this situation, IPADS has taken a positive steps to contribute to the development of efficient know-how/systems of online studies and research together with the international educational and research communities.
IPADS has collaborated in the development of a new project named ODSRC (Online Development Studies and Research Community) led by Dr. Guenther Manske of Center of Development Research (ZEF) , University of Bonn, and it was approved by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research BMBF via DAAD-IVAC for their funding from this autumn. The project aims at establishing digital collaboration formats for ZEF and IPADS lecturers together with their international partners, to facilitate and integrate their courses so that they will be more visible to the students in both north and south. By using these formats, students and lecturers can improve their digital skills through virtual cooperation. Furthermore, these international digital cooperation formats will enable the further target groups, for example, the students whose financial situation hinders physical mobility to access to intercultural experiences.
ZEF and IPADS have conducted educational/research activities together, including joint courseworks, workshops and symposiums since 2015. Other partners of this project are DAAD Doctoral Studies Support Program (DSSP): Environmental Peace Building and Development in Colombia, Graduate Studies Program of WASCAL (West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use), DAAD Ghanaian-German Center for Development Studies (GGCDS), and West African Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (WABES) which supports Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES).
Kensuke OKADA, IPADS Director said that he is excited to be a part of the progressive, practical and timely international project, which can significantly contribute to the development of innovative education and research in International Agricultural Development Studies, and expects that this project will enhance the intercultural exchange within the community and equalization of educational opportunities in times of the global health and socio-economic crisis under the COVID-19 pandemic .
“IPADS students can take advantage of the project by attending the online courses jointly conducted by IPADS/ZEF and other partner institutions under the project. Also, the project will give opportunitues to IPADS students to expand their international network and enlarge their perspectives by participating in the workshops and other events organized by the PhD students in ZEF” he said.
As part of the ODSRC project, Dr. Manfred Denich of ZEF will give “IPADS Introductory course“, a four days intensive course on international agricultural development studies from Bonn, Germany this week to IPADS newly enrolled students.
For more information about this article, please contact Noriko FUJIMOTO, IPADS Office