On March 4, 2021, Asst. Prof. Natt Leelawat, awardee of the AUN/SEED-Net recent rapid research grant, Special Program for Research Against COVID-19 (SPRAC) was invited by the Japan Cabinet Office to speak at the S-Booster x MGA Collaboration Webinar – Space Applications in Motion “Smarter City: Data Driving Smarter Decisions.” He gave a talk on the SPRAC research project “COVID-19 Data Analysis Using Mobile Services Data and Satellite Geospatial Data Towards Sustainable Tourism Business” at the webinar meeting.

Asst. Prof. Natt Leelawat is from the Department of Industrial Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Chulalongkorn University, Thailand. During the Japanese fiscal year 2020, he was awarded a total budget of USD 49,980 to conduct research activities between October 15, 2020, and December 15, 2021. The research team consists of Prof. Naohiki Kohtake (Professor), Asst. Prof. Akira Kodaka and Mr. Yasushi Onda (Researchers) at Keio University, and Mr. Kumpol Saengtabtim (Graduate student) from Chulalongkorn University. One of the planned research outcomes is to support the Ministry of Tourism, Public Health Ministry, and other stakeholders involved in tourism to evaluate the effect of proposed policies and public announcements during the COVID-19 situation.

The Secretariat is delighted that the SPRAC research project was shared at the webinar meeting. COVID-19 has swept across the globe and posed a serious threat to all nations. Amidst this global health crisis, AUN/SEED-Net shares the grave concern of people around the world and is determined to contribute its expertise and support to help alleviate the situation.