Asia and Middle East Program Seminars

Climate Change Adaptation Strategies for Small Island Developing States

Lessons from Artificial Island Development in the Maldives

Co-hosts: Sasakawa Peace Foundation (SPF), The Maldives National University (MNU), Global Infrastructure Fund Research Foundation Japan (GIF Japan), and Hosei University
 
As one of the most vulnerable small island states, the Maldives faces this existential challenge head-on, with the lowest mean sea level of any atoll country. Notably, the Maldivian government has spearheaded a proactive adaptation initiative, the creation of Hulhumalé, an artificial island strategically positioned with an average elevation of two meters above sea level.

This seminar focuses on the unique experience of the Maldives, focusing on the development and migration surge witnessed on Hulhumalé. Positioned near the capital city of Malé, this artificial landmass serves as a pioneering example of rapid adaptation to environmental challenges. The gathering of expert minds will explore the transferability of the Maldives' acquired knowledge and innovative solutions, examining how these insights can inform and shape sea-level rise adaptation strategies for other small island states facing similar threats. This seminar unravels the insights from the Maldives' experience and collaboratively chart a course toward resilient and sustainable solutions for the future.

We look forward to your participation.

Registration

Please register from either the in-person participation or online participation registration form below by 17:00 JST on Wednesday, February 28, 2024.

*In-person particpation will be limited to 50 slots. 

*For those who registered for in-person participation, please come to the venue on the day of the event. For those who registered for online participation, the information regarding the webinar URL will be sent around 11:00 JST on Thursday, February 29, 2024. 

When registering, please double check the email address provided in the form before submitting.

After registration, you will receive a temporary registration confirmation email. Please click the registration completion URL in the email within 24 hours of receiving it to finalize your registration.

If you do not receive this email, please also check the spam email box.

*We will use your registration information for future invitations to seminars and lectures sponsored or supported by SPF.
Contact
Dr. Maekawa and Ms. Oikawa
Asia and Middle East Program (SPF)
E-mail: asia@spf.or.jp
Tel: 03-5157-5160

For media inquiries:
Public Relations Division, Communication Department
E-mail: spfpr@spf.or.jp
Tel: 03-5157-5395

Description

14:00 Opening Remarks
Executive Director Adachi Itsu, Sasakawa Peace Foundation
14:10 Keynote speech, Climate Change Adaptation Strategy for the Maldives
Dr. Aishath Shehenaz Adam, Vice Chancellor, Central Administration, The Maldives National University (MNU)
14:30 Presentation on Hulhumalé
Mr. Ahmed Aslam, Director Strategic Management, Housing Development Corporation Limited (HDC)
Ms. Aishath Laila, General Manager, Research & Development, Strategic Management, HDC
14:50 Factors affecting Hulhumalé residents' satisfaction
Ms. Akiko Sakamoto, Secretary General, Global Infrastructure Fund Research Foundation Japan
Dr. Mikiyasu Nakayama, Managing Director, Global Infrastructure Fund Research Foundation Japan
15:10 Preliminary findings on motivations on inter-island migration
Dr. Raheema Abdul Raheem, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research & Enterprise), The Maldives National University
Mr. Adam Khalid, Dean, Faculty of Engineering, Science and Technology, The Maldives National University
Dr. Miko Maekawa, Senior Research Fellow, SPF
Ms. Akiko Sakamoto, Secretary General, Global Infrastructure Fund Research Foundation Japan
15:30 Break
15:40 Panel Discussion
MNU Representative
HDC Representative

Mr. Ahmed Shafiz, United Nations Development Programme Maldives
Professor Ryo Fujikura, Hosei University, 
Dr. Naonori Kusakabe, Rikkyo University 
Moderator: Dr. Miko Maekawa
16:50 Closing remarks
Dr. Mikiyasu Nakayama, Managing Director, Global Infrastructure Fund Research Foundation Japan
17:00 Closing

Speakers

Mr. Adachi Itsu
Opening remarks

Mr. Adachi Itsu

Executive Director, Sasakawa Peace Foundation

Profile

Mr. Itsu Adachi is an Executive Director at the Sasakawa Peace Foundation (SPF). He joined SPF in June 2020 to oversee departments and its projects related to conflict resolution and peacebuilding in Asia, labour migration, social integration, JapanChina relations, promoting understanding of the Middle East and Islam, and advancing gender equality and women’s economic empowerment by supporting development of ecosystems for impact investing and inclusive entrepreneurship. Prior to joining SPF, he spent 35 years leading international cooperation programs in developing countries at the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). His portfolio covered a wide range of official development assistance projects in Southeast Asia, including post-conflict peace building and reconstruction projects in Cambodia as Chief Representative of JICA, Cambodia office. He also led cross-sectoral initiatives leveraging technological innovation and digital transformation in development projects. Mr. Adachi graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from Sofia University, Japan.

Dr. Aishath Shehenaz Adam
SPEAKER

Dr. Aishath Shehenaz Adam

Vice Chancellor, Central Administration, The Maldives National University

Profile

Dr. Aishath Shehenaz Adam has been appointed as the Vice-Chancellor of the Maldives National University since November 19, 2023. Previously, she served as the Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Research and Enterprise at MNU. Dr. Adam graduated from the University of Newcastle, Australia with a Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and Education in 1995. She achieved a Postgraduate Diploma in Mathematics Education (1998) and a Master of Philosophy in Mathematics Education (1999) from the University of Waikato, New Zealand. In 2004 Dr. Adam obtained a Doctor of Philosophy in Mathematics Education from the University of Auckland, New Zealand, followed by a Postdoctoral Research fellowship at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks in 2005.

Dr. Adam has worked in the Maldives education sector since 1995 in different capacities. First, as a Mathematics Teacher, then as an Assistant Principal, and finally as the Executive Director for the Ministry of Education where she was responsible for both the educational supervision, national assessment and quality improvement of schools across the country.

She has also provided her knowledge and skills to independent organizations to strengthen educational standards at both local and international levels. She has worked as the National Coordinator for the UNESCO Education for All (EFA) program and as the Chairperson of the Advisory Board for Live and Learn (Maldives) Environmental Education. Additionally, Dr. Adam has published books, contributed to a number of journals and has been a consultant for education and higher education related projects in the Maldives.

In addition to her work in the education sector, Dr. Adam possesses notable experience in the foreign service as she served as the Ambassador of the Maldives to both Pakistan (2009-2013) and the United Arab Emirates (2013-2014) and as the non-resident Ambassador to Azerbaijan, Egypt, Jordan, Kazakhstan, and Uzbekistan (2011 – 2013).

Mr. Ahmed Aslam
SPEAKER

Mr. Ahmed Aslam

Director Strategic Management, Housing Development Corporation Limited (HDC)

Profile

Mr. Ahmed Aslam is employed as the Director of Strategic Management at Housing Development Corporation (HDC). He is currently heading the Strategic Planning, Research and Development, Quality Management and Risk Management. He has more than 20 years of professional experience in Finance and real estate industry, specializing in Accounting and Reporting, Auditing, Strategic Planning, Tax and Insurance.

Mr. Aslam has immense experienced lecturing at different universities and colleges such as Islamic University of Maldives, Villa college and MAPS college.

Mr. Aslam holds a Master’s Degree in Islamic Finance from (INCEIF), Bachelor Degree Accounting and Finance from the University of East London.

He is a fellow member of Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) ACMA, CGMA). Mr. Aslam is also a Senior Associate Member of Chartered Institute of Islamic Finance Profession (CIIF)

Mr. Ahmed Aslam has been a member of HDC Shariah Committee since June 2021. Aslam is also a CA Maldives licensed Auditor, MIRA licensed Tax Agent in Maldives.

Mr. Ahmed Aslam is actively engaging in social and voluntary work. He is a member of MRC and he was a member of Finance Commission of Maldives Red Crescent (MRC) from 2014 to 2019.

Ms. Aishath Laila
SPEAKER

Ms. Aishath Laila

General Manager, Research & Development, Strategic Management, HDC

Profile

Laila is a research expert focusing on sampling methodology, field monitoring, data quality, visualization, management, CAPI development and analysis with over 17 years of experience. As a research expert, she regularly works with national statistical offices to advise and train on the design, implementation and quality assurance of data collection exercises and develop sampling strategies to represent the survey data at different domain levels. As a data strategist, she provides guidance on data processes and tools, conducts training on the best methods for statistics analysis, cleaning and analysis of data and enjoys bringing data to life through interactive visualizations. Currently she is heading research and development section in Housing Development Corporation (HDC).

Ms. Akiko Sakamoto
SPEAKER

Ms. Akiko Sakamoto

Secretary General, Global Infrastructure Fund Research Foundation Japan

Profile

Akiko Sakamoto is a researcher and secretary general of the Global Infrastructure Fund Research Foundation Japan (GIF Japan), a non-profit organisation that promotes research on large-scale infrastructure projects around the world. She graduated from Keio University in 1991 with a bachelor's degree in psychology and joined Mitsubishi Research Institute Inc. as a research assistant, working on various projects such as feasibility studies of new technologies and regional development through the construction of large-scale public facilities. In 2008, she moved to GIF Japan and became involved in research on global infrastructure issues, such as the New Silk Road Initiatives connecting Eurasian countries and the natural gas pipeline network in East Asia. More recently, she has been studying how to adapt to sea-level rise caused by climate change through the construction of large-scale infrastructure such as artificial islands.

Dr. Miko Maekawa
SPEAKER

Dr. Miko Maekawa

Senior Research Fellow, Sasakawa Peace Foundation

Profile

Miko Maekawa, Senior Research Fellow at the Asia and Middle East Program of the Sasakawa Peace Foundation (SPF) has joined SPF since 2014, and specializes in the topics such as ocean and climate change, climate-induced migration issues and marine biological diversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction (BBNJ). She worked at several organizations before joining the SPF in 2014, among them the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), University of Tokyo, as an Assistant Professor with the “Wisdom of Water” (Suntory) Corporate Sponsored Research Program, and the Graduate School of Human Sciences at Osaka University, as a Lecturer. While working at the UNDP, she served at the UNDP’s Beijing Office, New York Headquarters, and Rwanda Office, at the last of which she was Assistant Resident Representative and Head of the Energy and Environment Unit. She holds a Ph.D. in International Studies from the University of Tokyo’s Graduate School of Frontier Sciences. She also holds a B.L.A. from Sophia University and a Master of Science in Environment and Development from the University of East Anglia.

Dr. Raheema Abdul Raheem
SPEAKER

Dr. Raheema Abdul Raheem

Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research & Enterprise), The Maldives National University

Profile

Raheema Abdul Raheem has been appointed as the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Enterprise) at The Maldives National University since 27 December 2023. Previously, Dr Raheema served as the Dean of Research at MNU. She holds a PhD in Public Health and has numerous publications in the areas of public health and public awareness. In her role as the Dean of Research, she has led more than 40 research projects and secured funding for the university. Additionally, she served as the vice-chair of the university ethics committee and holds the position of Editor-in-chief for the Maldives National Journal of Research. Raheema is a member of both the research grants committee and the book writing grants committee. She has initiated and organized six Theveli conferences and two IEEE conferences. Previously, Raheema worked as a lecturer and Head of the Department at the Faculty of Health Sciences at The Maldives National University. Some of the research projects led by Raheema include ‘Strategic Support for Accreditation of Programs and Internationalization at South Asian Higher Education Institutes / SSAPI (2021-2023)’, ‘Endgame Strategy for Leprosy in the Maldives’, ‘Soil Transmitted Helminthiasis’, ‘Maldives Steps Survey’, ‘Trans-fat Survey’, and ‘Use of Wolbachia to Control Dengue’.

Mr. Adam Khalid
SPEAKER

Mr. Adam Khalid

Dean, Faculty of Engineering, Science and Technology, The Maldives National University

Profile

Dean Faculty of Engineering Science And Technology.

Started career as an Engineer State Electric Company Limited. Then joined as teacher Majeediya School. I have played a major role in developing the National curriculum for Computer Science in the country.

Developed applications for writing our script and also developing search engine for Dhivehi.

Main research interests are in the areas of artificial intelligence, machine learning and programming languages.

Prof. Ryo Fujikura
PANELIST

Prof. Ryo Fujikura

Hosei University

Profile

Ryo Fujikura is Professor at Hosei University and Chairman of the Society of Environmental Science, Japan. He received his B.Sc. (1978) and M.Sc. (1980) from the University of Tokyo and his Doctor of Natural Science (1982) from the University of Innsbruck, Austria. From 1984 to 1995, he served as an official in the Environment Agency (now the Ministry of Environment) of the Japanese government. He was an associate professor at Kyushu University and later a professor at Ritsumeikan University from 1995 to 2003. From 2012 to 2018, he served on the Board of Directors of the Regional Environmental Center for Central and Eastern Europe (Hungary). His current research topics include the environmental and social impacts of infrastructure development and migration in the context of climate change. He edited Resettlement Policy in Large Development Projects (2015) Routledge, Climate Change Mitigation and Development Cooperation (2012) Earthscan, and Climate Change Adaptation and International Development (2010), Earthscan.

Dr. Naonori Kusakabe
PANELIST

Dr. Naonori Kusakabe

Associate Professor, College of Intercultural Communication Department of Intercultural Communication, Rikkyo University

Profile

Associate Professor at Rikkyo University, Japan.

Naonori KUSAKABE obtained his PhD in Human Science from Osaka University. His major areas of research interest include disaster vulnerability and prevention, social protection and justice, and poverty in Bangladesh.

He also specializes in South Asian studies, particularly themes such as international cooperation and development. He approaches global social challenges from the viewpoint of people in vulnerable situations in South Asian countries and consider how international cooperation should work on the basis of understanding different cultures.

Selected publications:

Kusakabe, N. 2021. Impact Assessment of the 15-year project on Girl Domestic Workers in Bangladesh. SHAPLA NEER.

Kusakabe, N. 2020. Disaster Vulnerability and Poverty in Developing Countries: Cyclone Damage and Resilience in Bangladesh. ICON Press.

Kusakabe, N. 2019. “Rohingya Refugees in Bangladesh.” In Gender and Ethnicity in Bangladesh: Life as a Rohingya Refugee, FINDAS International Conference Series 3, The Center for South Asian Studies (FINDAS), 7-14.

Mr. Brigien Suhaendra
PANELIST

Mr. Ahmed Shafiz

United Nations Development Programme Maldives

Dr. Mikiyasu Nakayama
CLOSING REMARKS

Dr. Mikiyasu Nakayama

Managing Director, Global Infrastructure Fund Research Foundation Japan

Profile

Dr. Nakayama presently serves as the Managing Director of the Global Infrastructure Fund Research Foundation Japan. He works on migration of people from the Pacific and other areas to the developed world. This research aims at securing findings which should be useful for migrants to re-establishment livelihood painlessly and successfully after their arrival at destinations. Dr. Nakayama have conducted field research for this research agenda in Majuro (Republic of the Marshall Islands), Pohnpei (Federal States of Micronesia) and Hulhumalé (Maldives).

Publications in this field include "Migration with Dignity: A Case Study on the Livelihood Transition of Marshallese to Springdale, Arkansas (McClain, Bruch, Nakayama & Laelan, 2019)", "Addressing the Health Problems After Immigration Faced by the Marshallese in Springdale, Arkansas: Lessons Learned from the City of Vienna (Fujikura, Nakayama, McClain & Drinkall, 2019)", "Alternatives for the Marshall Islands to cope with the anticipated sea level rise by climate change (Nakayama et al, 2022)", and "Evacuees preferred to continue living in relocation sites rather than return: misunderstanding of the government and media about the true intentions of evacuees (Fujikura, Maekawa, Nakayama & Sasaki, 2022)."

Dr. Nakayama obtained his doctor degree from the Faculty of Agriculture, the University of Tokyo in 1986. He worked for the World Bank, United Nations Environment Programme, Utsunomiya University (Japan), Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, and the University of Tokyo between 1986 and 2020, focusing on management of natural resources and the environment.

Latest Events

pagetop