In celebration of Earth Day, the University of the Philippines (UP) launches an online knowledge hub featuring UP’s expertise and resources on disaster risk reduction and management (DRRM) including both climate change adaptation and disaster risk mitigation.
RESILIENCE or REsources for Science-Informed LIteracy and ENgagement towards Building Community ResiliencE, is the UP website which will respond to the need for climate- and disaster-related information and services from the country’s experts in the engineering, geology, governance, community development and other fields integral to the mitigation and preparation of communities for the impacts of climate change and disaster risk.
The website is a product of the close collaboration of the university with the Climate Change Commission (CCC) and Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ). The three institutions signed a Memorandum of Agreement in June 2013, which spurred the cooperation and bore the RESILIENCE website into fruition.
“The RESILIENCE website reflects the university’s commitment as ‘One UP’ to make available to the public its expertise and knowledge products pertaining to climate change and disaster risk management,” said UP President Alfredo E. Pascual. “The online portal is one of the few academe-based initiatives in the world that houses a multi-disciplinary knowledge base to support resilience learning, teaching, capacity building, and policy development,” he added.
President Pascual also pointed out a parallel initiative by UP and partners to establish the Resilience Institute for DRRM Knowledge Solutions and Partneships. This will be an Asia-Pacific collaboration hub through which UP’s researchers, creative workers and other scholars continue to produce and share knowledge solutions through multidisciplinal and multilateral partnerships among scholars and policymakers, assisting the Philippines and other similarly vulnerable economies in attaining sustainable development goals. The Institute formation is coordinated by UP Diliman Vice-Chancellor for Academic Affairs Benito M. Pacheco, himself a knowledge worker in DRRM.
As the national university, UP is mandated by Republic Act 9500, or the UP Charter of 2008 to exercise a unique and distinctive leadership in education, research and public service. The RESILIENCE website, with materials from the country’s foremost members of the academe, will be another project where the university expresses its continued commitment to serve the people.
UP Vice President for Public Affairs Prospero E. De Vera highlighted the significance of the website in enhancing the public’s capacity against the impact of climate change. “This website will be a very important resource for our people to better understand and prepare for the impact of climate change,” he said. “This will also greatly benefit members of the academe and students, particularly those in the SUCs (State Universities and Colleges), who will be involved in the teaching, research and public service mandates as public universities,” he added.
Experts from UP’s constituent units: UP Diliman, UP Los Baños, UP Manila, UP Visayas, UP Open University, UP Mindanao, UP Baguio and UP Cebu, were involved in the preparation of the website. These climate change experts have been working with their colleagues, through the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs.
The website houses an inventory of faculty and staff, as well as colleges, institutes and centers in all UP campuses, whose line of work touches on the various aspects of climate change and DRRM. It also showcases the university’s various research projects, theses and dissertations pertinent to climate change and disasters, and offers a host of related informational resources such as videos, infographics, games, news, events and educational opportunities.
A video-making side competition “The Resilience Challenge” is also being launched to mark the introduction of the online portal. Mechanics and other details may be found on the RESILIENCE website at http://resilience.up.edu.ph.