The 4th Joint Symposium of Osaka University with Higher Educational Institutions of Brunei Darussalam was held virtually via Zoom Technology this afternoon.
This online symposium was jointly officiated by Dr. Hj Azman bin Ahmad, Permanent Secretary (Higher Education), Ministry of Education of Brunei Darussalam and Professor Dr. Kawahara Genta, Executive Vice President of Osaka University.
In his welcoming remarks, Yang Mulia Dr. Haji Azman highlighted how this collaboration benefited local universities where students are able to experience and gain exposure conducting research in Osaka University through the student exchange programme. Local Bruneian lecturers and researchers were able to access the advance laboratory facilities at Osaka University where their findings have reached another level of development. This is indeed a very important and encouraging achievements.
He foresees that this collaboration will have more prospects in the future and happy to learn that the area of collaboration has expanded and the number of participation has increased both at students level as well as the lecturers and researchers level.
A total of 76 participants have registered for the symposium. The symposium showcases research findings and the students also share their wonderful experience when studying at Osaka University. Since the establishment of the collaboration, three symposiums have been organised, hosted by both parties taking turns alternating the venue either at Osaka University and Brunei Darussalam.
The collaboration with Osaka University opens a very huge opportunity for Brunei Darussalam to leap frog towards producing halal products such as food ingredients, functional food, cosmetic, pharmaceutical products and many more from our biodiversity and bio-resources. At the same time, Brunei Darussalam through the universities can also adapt advanced technology and innovation to enhance local activities towards the economic diversification such as the approach towards smart agriculture, using artificial intelligence for monitoring and bio-prospecting, bio-energy and many more.
Both parties have been very active in implementing the programs, including the joint-research which are open for lecturers, researchers and students. This particular programme enhances the ability of Bruneian researchers exposing them to advance instrumentations, which results in getting very promising results leading to commercialization. This joint research program also leads to the establishment of a joint-laboratory both involving hard science and social sciences.
Another programme that is on-going, is student exchange under Japan Student Services Organization (JASSO). Few students have been co-sponsored by both universities to do research at Osaka University. The wide network and connection in Japan, gave the students great exposure and gain experience.
The study programme is another initiative, which can become a platform towards double degree and eventually joint-degree. The newly introduced Osaka University International certificate program (OUICP) will give the students an opportunity to experience studying at Osaka University for a longer period up to three months in area of their own interest within the three clusters. Their stay in Japan will be sponsored under Osaka University scholarship.
The collaboration between Osaka University and the Higher Educational Institutions in Brunei Darussalam started way back late 2017. The objectives are to showcase human resource capabilities in research and innovation, to introduce advance technology and to explore the potential of the development of new products from the bio-resources and biodiversity of Brunei Darussalam. The three clusters that have been identified are Biodiversity cluster, Halal cluster, Nano-technology and ICT Cluster each of which is led by the three local universities namely Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD), Universiti Islam Sultan Sharif Ali (UNISSA) and Universiti Teknologi Brunei (UTB) respectively.
Also in attendance at today's symposium were the representative of the Vice Chancellor of UBD, representative of Rector of UNISSA, representative of the Vice Chancellor of UTB, Faculty members and students.