Launch Ceremony Project 3SIP2C

Launch Ceremony Project “Sources, sinks and solutions for impacts of plastics on coastal communities in Vietnam”

On the morning of May 26, 2022, the launch ceremony of the Project "Sources, Sinks and Solutions for Impacts of Plastics on Coastal Communities in Vietnam” (referred to as 3SIP2C) was held at Phenikaa University, Hanoi.

The 3SIP2C Project is funded by the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) through the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) of Research and Innovation - UK (UKRI) and implemented by Heriot-Watt University (United Kingdom) and 07 partners in Vietnam, including Phenikaa University (Focus unit); Institute for Environment and Resources (IER) (Vietnam National University - Ho Chi Minh City); Institute of Vietnamese Studies and Development Sciences (Vietnam National University, Hanoi); Hanoi University of Science and Technology; Fisheries and Technical Economic College; Vietnam Institute of Fisheries Economics and Planning; and Institute of Strategy and Policy on Natural Resources and Environment.

Attending the ceremony were representatives of Heriot-Watt University - Prof. Michel Kaiser - Project Director and Prof. Thomas Wagner - Co-in charge of the project; representatives of leading agencies implementing projects on the Vietnamese side; and different stakeholders. Director of the International Cooperation Department, Directorate of Fisheries (Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development), Dr. Nguyen Thi Phuong Dung, represented the state management agencies. Ms. Phan Lien Huong, Program Manager for Cooperation in Scientific Research and Innovation at the British Embassy in Vietnam, was present. Together with over 60 delegates who are scientists, managers, and experts from universities, research institutes, hospitals, NGOs working in the fields of environment, policy, health, seafood, and tourism, etc.

Prof. Michel Kaiser - Heriot-Watt University, Project Director

In particular, attending the ceremony were representatives of the Department of Natural Resources and Environment, the Department of Science and Technology, and the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development from some provinces (Hai Phong, Nam Dinh and Ben Tre). As planned, the project will carry out sampling and consultation with authorities and communities in the localities mentioned above, so the participation of local representatives is of great significance.

Prof. Dr. Pham Thanh Huy, President of Phenikka University, delivered a welcome speech at the event. He affirmed the companionship of Phenikaa University with the project, ready to cooperate with businesses, universities, institutes, and research centers in Vietnam as well as internationally to transfer knowledge and serve the community to help not only students develop comprehensively but also demonstrate the university's commitment to sustainable development goals.

Leaders/ representatives of project partners participating in the Launch ceremony of project

Prof. Michel Kaiser, the representative of the project implementation team, stated in his opening speech and project overview that the 3SIP2C project would contribute to clarifying the sources and sinks of ocean plastic waste and their impacts on the socio-economic activities of coastal communities, environmental quality, the health of natural ecosystems, and human health. Based on the research results, the project will propose policy shifts and solutions to minimize the impacts of plastic waste on coastal communities in Vietnam.

At the ceremony, the representative of the state management agency Dr. Nguyen Thi Phuong Dung, presented the Action Plan to reduce plastic waste in the seafood industry from 2020 to 2030. In addition, representatives of the components of the 3SIP2C project also presented the objectives, methods, and activities of each Work Package.

During the session of the introduction of the Project's components and plenary discussion, chaired by Professor Michel Kaiser - Project Director (Heriot-Watt University), and Dr. Ngo Thi Thuy Huong - Co-Director of the Project in Vietnam (Phenikaa University), the objectives, work approach and expected outcomes of each component were introduced to attendees and stakeholders. At the same time, the Project also received many congratulations and valuable comments for the Project's upcoming activities. The role and significance of the Project in the management of plastic waste in Vietnam were highly valued by the attendees. At the same time, they also discussed and exchanged issues related to the location and scope of sampling and research methods, implementation time, and how to use and publish research results. Some comments from representatives of localities emphasized the importance of information and data to monitor the effectiveness of the implementation of policies and wished to inherit the results of the project later to serve the development better and implement local plastic waste management policies.

Representatives of Heriot-Watt University and Phenikaa University signing the MoU

In the closing remarks of the ceremony, Prof. Michel Kaiser and Dr. Ngo Thi Thuy Huong, on behalf of the Project team, expressed their sincere thanks to the participants, acknowledged the comments and wishes to share information, and coordinate with stakeholders, especially localities and State management agencies, in the process of implementing the Project's activities.

At the event on the same day, the signing ceremony of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on cooperation between Heriot-Watt University and Phenikaa University was carried out under the witness of representatives of the British Embassy, the Directorate of Fisheries of Vietnam, Heriot-Watt University, Phenikaa University, and representatives of relevant agencies attended the conference. This is also an important event expressing the desire to build deeper cooperation in scientific research and long-term training between the two universities in the future. The signing ceremony of an MoU between the two universities at the 3SIP2C project kick-off event shows that Phenikaa University wishes to accompany partner agencies and commits to supporting the Project to realize its mitigation of plastic waste in coastal communities in Vietnam, serving the goal of sustainable development.