Hosted by China’s first national-level laboratory for marine science and technology under the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), the Qingdao National Laboratory for Marine Science and Technology (QNLM), the IRDR Science Committee began its three-day meeting on Monday, 1 June 2015, at the Laoshan Campus of the Ocean University of China in Qingdao, Shandong Province, China. This is the 13th such meeting since the programme began in 2010, and the first for 2015.
The Science Committee was welcomed by QNLM’s Prof Kehou Pan, who led the local organising team in preparation for the holding of the meeting at the Laboratory. At the beginning of the meeting the Science Committee was introduced to QNLM, which was established in December 2013, and jointly built by the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST), the provincial government of Shandong and the Qingdao Municipality. The Laboratory has eight main labs covering the following research areas: sustainable utilisation of marine biological resources; evolution and protection of marine ecological environment; marine geological process and mineral resources exploration; marine observation and numerical modeling; deep-sea exploration; marine renewable energy resources; and marine engineering equipment.
The first day of the meeting, open only to Science Committee members and ex-officios, was dedicated to the governance matters of the programme. SC members reviewed IRDR’s role during the recently held Third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (3rd WCDRR), held in Sendai, Japan from 14-18 March 2015. Alongside one of the programme’s Co-Sponsors, the International Council for Science (ICSU), the latter acting as the Organising Partner for the Science and Technology Major Group (STMG), IRDR led the 400-strong STMG delegation to the 3rd WCDRR and also held a WCDRR Public Forum side event on 15 March, Integrated Research on Disaster Risk: the Role of Science in Disaster Risk Reduction. This review opened further reflections on IRDR’s future and its role in the implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, 2015-2030. Updates were also received from ex-officio members ICSU and the Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth (RADI) on their respective organisational activities since reporting at the 12th SC meeting in November 2014. Decisions were also taken on proposals received for two IRDR National Committees.
IRDR’s Science Committee meets at least twice per year, of which one of these meetings is held in China where its International Programme Office (IPO) is hosted by RADI in Beijing.