SPI participated in the Pacific Europe Network for Science, Technology and Innovation (PACE-NET PLUS) Conference and Think Tanks from the 9th to 11th September 2014 in Bremen, Germany. PACE-NET PLUS project supports the EU-Pacific policy dialogue and cooperation for addressing three major societal challenges: health, food and nutrition security, climate change and the environment.
The event took place at the House of Science (Haus de Wissenschaft) and included plenary sessions (Project introduction, think tank introduction, scene settings, summary and conclusion), and three think thanks (1) Tackling Non-Communicable Diseases – NCD – Lifestyle options for improved nutrition and well-being, 2) Exploring the convergence of science and traditional knowledge in aqua and agriculture for sustainable, healthy living in the 21st century and 3) Enhancing community resilience: managing environment, water and wastes under a changing climate.).
The Bremen conference and think tanks aim to 1) Explore the research priorities from both EU and the Pacific region in the three fields; 2) Identify innovation niches from the three thematic fields and develop preliminary ideas for joint initiatives and joint activities 3) Provide policy recommendations from all Think-Tanks which will feed the bi-regional policy dialogue to enhance the scientific and technological cooperation on the decision maker level. Such results will be presented in the next project event – bi-regional dialogue in Auckland, December 2014.
SPI, as a partner of the consortium as well as leader of the Work Package on Health, played a key role in organizing Think Tank 1 – Health NCDs. 32 experts from Europe (Portugal, France, Germany, UK) and the Pacific islands (Kiribati, Tuvalu, Fiji, New Caledonia, Taihiti, Hawaii, Samoa, Australia and New Zealand) participated in the think tank and provided valuable inputs and ideas on potential joint initiatives and activities. In addition, SPI actively promoted the conference and engaged with stakeholders for the conference from both Europe and the Pacific. SPI expanded its knowledge and network not only in the health topics on NCDs but also in Pacific research and innovation players.