The NASA Land Cover Land Use Change South/ Southeast Asia Research Initiative (LCLUC SARI) regional science meeting was held May 28-30th in Manila, Philippines. The LCLUC SARI program works to strengthen regional coordination for research and capacity building. Over 200 participants from 19 countries were in attendance with strong representation from regional and international partners from space agency, government, university and NGO’s. National Space Agencies GISTDA, JAXA, VNSC, ISRO, and LAPAN gave overviews of current agricultural remote sensing activities in addition to presentations on regional activities. GEOGLAM team members including IRRI as well as national ministry and international development agencies also presented latest agricultural research activities in different countries.
Two agricultural sessions were led and organized by EOFSAC with a focus on serious end user outreach, bringing together partners from ministry, space agency, university and international development organizations. These sessions served as a platform to share experience on agricultural mapping and monitoring efforts in the region and present decision support systems ongoing and in development for South/ Southeast Asia. EOFSAC and GEOGLAM programs were presented in these sessions. During the sessions, the Crop Monitor program, launch of the Eastern Africa Crop Monitor Bulletin and National Crop Monitor for Vietnam were also presented. The National Crop Monitor for Vietnam in collaboration with MARD CIS, VNSC, and GEOGLAM was announced as an example of national coordination and capacity building to support operational agricultural monitoring efforts and outreach.
Rice monitoring is expanding fast as a field of study in South/ Southeast Asia and an important output of this meeting was recognition of the need for regional coordination for rice monitoring efforts at the national level including development of operational systems to support end user outreach.