Future Earth and Monsoon Asia Integrated Research for Sustainability - Future Earth (MAIRS-FE) have signed a memorandum of understanding to complete the transition of the project to Future Earth. Representatives from both groups signed the agreement at the Fifth Workshop on Future Earth in Asia held at the Research Institute for Humanity and Nature (RIHN) in Kyoto on 24 January 2017. MAIRS-FE is one of 20 global research projects of Future Earth.
The transition of MAIRS-FE, formerly called the Monsoon Asia Integrated Regional Study (MAIRS), to Future Earth commenced about two years ago. The Future Earth Regional Centre for Asia hosted a meeting of the Scientific Steering Committee (SSC) in November 2016, which provided the turning point for the project.
At that meeting, offers of support to host the International Project Office (IPO) for MAIRS-FE at Peking University in Beijing and to host the Regional Project Office (RPO) at the Indian Institute for Science in Bangalore, India, were accepted. Also at the meeting, Tong Zhu was appointed as Interim Director of the IPO and S.K. Satheesh was appointed as Interim Director of the RPO. Michael Manton is Chair of the Scientific Steering Committee of MAIRS-FE.
The project is establishing a new website, which will launch shortly under the domain name mairs-fe.org.
The Initial Strategic Research Plan for Future Earth in Asia prepared by the SSC identified three priority research areas. These areas, which will be important for researchers in Asia and to align with the goals of Future Earth’s Knowledge-Action Networks, are:
- resilience to climate-related natural disasters
- human health in monsoon Asia
- water, energy and food nexus.
MAIRS-FE will continue to address cross-cutting global change issues related to the unique Asian monsoon climate and topography, and develop links across the diverse cultures and societies of Asia. It will also closely work with other Future Earth global research projects, relevant Knowledge-Action Networks and the Regional Advisory Committee for Future Earth in Asia.