Dr Tashi Samdup


From left : Karma Tenzing, Dr Tashi Samdup and Kuenga Namgay at CSU Thurgoona.

A visitor to the Institute on August 14 was Dr Tashi Samdup, Director of the Council for Renewable Natural Resources of Bhutan. Dr Samdup was in Australia for a week to meet with two Institute PhD students, Kuenga Namgay and Karma Tenzing, whom he supervises.  Kuenga, who has been in Australia for three and a half years, is close to finishing his PhD and Karma has been here for one year. The other reason for Dr Samdup’s visit was to discuss possible research collaboration between the Council and CSU, in particular its environmental science program, and members of the Institute’s Improving Rural Livelihoods in Developing Countries SRA, in particular Dr Joanne Millar and Dr Rik Thwaites.

While at the Albury-Wodonga campus Dr Samdup also gave a presentation on the Council, the work it does and some of its strategic research areas. “The Council is a multi-disciplinary research council which covers broad areas like livestock, forestry, and agriculture and then the environmental and management aspects of these areas,” explains Dr Samdup. “With agriculture, for example, we are developing new ideas for crops and horticulture. We are also looking at socio-economic aspects.”He explained that the Council was the “apex” body for renewable natural resources and any research done in this area in Bhutan has to be approved by the Council. After it is approved, the research undertaken is monitored and its impact then evaluated by the Council.

Dr Samdup believes there was a lot that a country like Bhutan could learn from Australia, especially in terms of how to address land degradation issues, and natural resource management in general.  A number of opportunities for collaboration were identified during Dr Samdup’s visit, and in 2014 a group of students from the School of Environmental Sciences will visit Bhutan on a study tour.

About ilwscsu
The Institute for Land, Water and Society is one of four Centres of Research Excellence within Charles Sturt University, Australia. Its principal focus is on integrated research which contributes to improved social and environmental sustainability in rural and regional areas.

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