by : Johannes Lehmann, Stephen Joseph
by : Erina Sulistiani, Samsul Ahmad Yani
ISO 9001:2008 Certified
ISO 17025:2005 Certified
Conservation of biological resources is a universal concern considering the many basic goods and ecosystems services that biodiversity provides. For Southeast Asia, which is a key biodiversity region of the world, this concern is very critical as the region’s biodiversity is now under massive threat from a variety of factors especially those that are anthropological in nature such as rapid population growth and modernization.
Southeast Asia has three of the world’s 17 mega-diverse countries (i.e., Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines) and 7 of the world’s 35 recognized biodiversity hotspots based on The World Conservation Union (IUCN) category. The need to conserve the region’s biodiversity highly requires close coordination mechanisms among governments in order to carry out effective national comprehensive programmes. However, such mechanisms are limiting and efforts at the national level alone are not enough to manage this regional concern as some countries have limited expertise and resources.
Conducting joint research has proven to be very beneficial in many respects. Other than establishing institutional cooperation and linkages, joint research activities could help maximize available resources, enhance awareness and knowledge generation as well as allow the formulation of more effective management plans and policy guidelines towards any development endeavor including biodiversity conservation.
SEAMEO BIOTROP is mandated to conduct research activities that are aimed to address tropical biology related problems in the region. Yearly, the Centre receives funding support from the Government of Indonesia for its research projects that are mostly developed and implemented by its in-house researchers along its program thrusts. In most cases, however, the research projects are focused on the needs of the host country as the source of fund and are seldom in collaboration with other research institutions outside Indonesia. This somehow limits the regional application of the results generated from the Centre’s research project. Thus, this program proposal.
In general, this program aims to promote scientific collaborations among government research and academic institutions towards addressing common development concerns among Southeast Asian countries along the program thrusts of SEAMEO BIOTROP.
The specific objectives are as follows:
- To widen the scope and regional relevance of the Centre’s research activities
- To maximize the Centre’s research funds from the Government of Indonesia
- To enhance the linkage/network of the Centre’s in-house researchers with other researchers from other Southeast Asian countries
- To create a more regional scientific environment in the Centre
- The Program is open to all nationals of SEAMEO member countries who are occupying a permanent position in government research and academic institutions.
- The Program will be funded through the grants that the Centre receives from the Government of Indonesia. The research proposal that would be selected shall be awarded a grant equivalent to US$10,000. At least two slots shall be allocated for this purpose every year. This number may increase depending on the number of meritable proposals that the Centre will receive.
- SEAMEO BIOTROP shall have a regular call for proposals and accept submission from March to May of every year.
- The research project proposal must be in line with BIOTROP’s program thrusts, namely: (a) Tropical Biology for Community Welfare, and (b) Tropical Biology for Environmental Integrity. It must also touch on a topic that addresses both needs of Indonesia and the country of the lead proponent and thus there should be components of the research activities that should be conducted also in both countries.
- The research proposals shall be subjected to external review by a committee that SEAMEO BIOTROP shall form following a set of criteria that the Centre currently uses as follows:
- Relevance of the Proposal (15%)
- Scientific Rigor of the Proposal Components (65%)
- Research Capability of the Proponent/s (10%)
- Feasibility of the Period of Implementation (5%)
- Budget Feasibility (5%)
- The proposal must have the following components:
- Title (The title of the project must be clear, concise, and attractive to generate interest/participation from all actors that are expected to be involved in the implementation of the project)
- Background/Rationale (This section should clearly specify the issues and concerns that the project would like to address. Why is it important to undertake the project? Who will benefit and how?)
- Objectives (The objectives must be concrete enough against which the project’s success or failure can be assessed)
- Review of Related Literature (This must situate the proposal on the current body of knowledge on the subject of the research. Related literature to be cited in the proposal must not be older than 5 years)
- Components and Methodologies (This section must answer how the project objectives can be achieved with the components and methodologies that the project would adopt. It should also specify the partners that would be involved in the implementation of the project)
- Timetable of Activity Implementation (This would specify the overall duration of the project broken down into specific time allocation to undertake the various components and activities)
- Monitoring and Evaluation (This section should specify the way the progress of the project would be assessed according to its objective and timeframe by component, and including the people who will be involved)
- Expected Outputs and Outcomes (This section should enumerate the concrete/tangible outputs and outcomes that the project is expected to produce in relation to its objectives)
- Estimated Budgetary Requirements (The budget must include among others personnel services, travel, equipment and facilities rentals, sundry, administrative costs. If possible, also indicate items that the Centre can counterpart in implementing the project as some donors are very particular about this)
- The lead research project proponent shall identify and indicate in the proposal the name of Indonesian expert/s that he/she would work with during the project implementation. Special preference shall be given to BIOTROP in-house researchers and those from the leading universities and government research institutions in Indonesia.
- Together with the project proposal, the following documents must also be submitted to BIOTROP:
- Application Letter addressed to BIOTROP Director
- Curriculum Vitae of all research project team
- Letter of Endorsement from the immediate supervisor of the lead research project proponent
- The research project is expected to be completed within an 8-month period. Of this period, at least one month shall be devoted for the Indonesian component of the research project especially for field data gathering and/or laboratory works at SEAMEO BIOTROP. While at the Centre, the expert may be requested to present a seminar before the staff and other interested parties on a topic that highlights his/her expertise or research experiences.
- The grant shall be used only for the actual conduct of the research activities. The lead project proponent shall counterpart the amount needed for staying in Indonesia in terms of his/her board and lodging and international travel.
- The lead project proponent shall be under contract with SEAMEO BIOTROP within a 10-month period broken down as follows: 1 month for pre-implementation, 8 months for during implementation and 1 month for post-implementation phases of the research project. The contract details the proponent’s duties and responsibilities, including those that have been mentioned above and other legal and administrative procedures towards ensuring the completion of the research project.
- Disbursement and use of research fund shall follow DIPA regulations.
- Other than a completion report, the lead research proponent is expect to submit a draft of an article on the research project three months after its completion for journal publication.