On 14 October 2019, general meeting and 5th symposium were organized by Nepal JSPS Alumni Association (NJAA) in Kathmandu, Nepal.
In the morning, NJAA hold the general meeting. It was reported about the JSPS Guidance seminar in August. The reaction of the participants was so favorable, and more applications would be expected next year.
In the afternoon, 5th symposium of NJAA was held on the theme “Emerging Issues, Challenges and Opportunities in Urban Planning in Nepal” with approximately 100 participants including researchers, government officials and so on.
In the inaugural session, Yumiko Asakuma, Chief Representative of Japan Institution Cooperation Agency (JICA) Nepal Office, made her speech. She visited Nepal for the first time 30 years ago, and she felt now that this country was developed very much. She hoped this symposium be successful, and would propose some hints about its urban problems.
His Excellency Masamichi Saigo Japanese ambassador to Nepal offered remarks as a special guest. At first, he appreciated for the messages from people of Nepal, about the damages in Japan, hit by the typhoon in October. Secondly he asked the members of NJAA to act as the budge for making better relationship between two countries.
Dr. Sunil Babu Shrestha（Vice Chancellor of Nepal Academy of Science and Technology (NAST) also delivered a message. He hoped for creating ideal relationship between Nepal and Japan to overcome the challenges of both countries. He thought that this symposium could be the first step.
In the Scientific session, following speakers gave lectures related to the theme of this symposium.
First, Dr. Hironori Kato (Professor, Graduate school of Engineering, the University of Tokyo) delivered a keynote presentation, titled “Japan on Issues, Challenges and Opportunities in Urban Planning in developing countries”.
He explained the problems in the huge cities all over the world, for example, traffic jams, emission of CO2, and the noise from cars. Furthermore, he gave the participants three advises about the approach to the problems.
・Psychological / Educational approach
・Traffic demand management / Modal shift approach
・Joint planning of land-use and transportation approach
Next, Mr. Padma S. Joshi, and Mr. Er. Surendra Mohan Shrestha gave lectures.
Wrapping up the Symposium, Prof. Kuniaki Yamashita, Director of JSPS Bangkok Office, introduced JSPS international programs.
He encouraged the researchers to try their applications to the JSPS programs again and again, although these were very competitive.