On April 25, 2022, as the main coordinator of the consortium, the National University of Laos (NUOL) arranged an online meeting to report on progress over the past six months. The meeting was attended by the CEP-SME-AISA partners, including the University of Kitakyushu (UKK), King Mongkut’s University of Technology North Bangkok (KMUTNB), King Mongkut’s University of Technology Thonburi (KMUTT), and Rajamangala University of Technology Rattanakosin (RMUTR).

The consortium also successfully concluded the activities implemented during the first year. Over the past 11 months, all expected deliverable outputs have been achieved as planned for the first year, including the recruitment of eight ASEAN students/young professionals to participate in the industry-academia research and education integrated program by collaborating with universities in Thailand, Laos PDR, and Japan to develop their skills in wastewater engineering, the organization of three international academic workshops, and the formulation of eight collaborative research projects with the following industrial partners to develop practical research in alignment with real industry needs: Thailand Institute of Nuclear Technology (TINT), Chalong Latex industry Co., Ltd. (CLT), Suksomboon Palm Oil Co. Ltd.(SSB), XP Trading Lao-Chine Company, and Lao Agrotech Public Company (LAT). During the first year, the consortium actively produced several international conference papers with high impact factors. These journals and articles related to the improvement in the quality of industrial waste management, such as increasing process efficiency and reducing greenhouse gas emissions to overcome the common environmental problems stemming from agro-industry production, particularly in Thailand and Lao PDR.

Finally, the consortium secured external funding from the project entitled “Research and Invention for Thai Innovation List Gap Fund: Environmental Project (RILGF)”, supported by the National Science and Technology Development Agency (NSTDA), representing one of its prominent outputs. This not only indicates the efficacy of the consortium in maintaining its research activities sustainably but also achieves the goal of putting research into practice to sustainably overcome environmental problems through the improvement of industrial production.

We would like to express our sincere gratitude to all CEP-SME-AISA partners for their impressive success during the first year of the consortium’s establishment. We wish them every success in their future endeavors.

Figure 1: Group photo of the CEP-SME-AISA members and JICA Project for AUN/SEED-Net staff

Figure 2: A summary of the consortium’s outputs during the first year of its establishment

Figure 3: Research from the KMUTT secured fund and support from NSTDA and ACTIVE SCIENCE CO., LTD.

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