By the time you read this I will have completed my first year immersed in AAPG activities in the Asia Pacific region.
Having enjoyed studying geography in school, I’m excited to be representing AAPG in the Asia Pacific, the largest AAPG region. As you would expect, there are many opportunities for AAPG to serve the geosciences community in this vast area. I’m fortunate to have the insights and expertise of the AP Region Council, led by Joseph Lambiase, with support from Peter Baillie, Mick McWalter and Abul (Shams) Shamsuddin to help me prioritize projects and deliver value to our members and other professionals here.
Of course, I also work closely with the AAPG staff in Tulsa and have learned so much during this period; personal thanks to everyone concerned.
Here are some of the highlights of our first year of operation – and projects that currently are under way.
♦ AAPG Executive Director Rick Fritz visited Japan, Malaysia and Singapore in January this year.
In Tokyo, Rick met with executives from JAPEX and several major E&P companies and gave a talk to students at the University of Tokyo; in Malaysia, he visited our student chapter at the University of Malaysia, Malaya, met with representatives from our affiliate, the Geological Society of Malaysia, spent time visiting with Petronas officials and also met House of Delegates representative Askury Abdul Kadir.
♦ A one-day AP Region strategy meeting was held in Singapore.
One priority is to develop and offer Geosciences Technology Workshops (GTW) and education courses in the Region. I opened a line of communication with our House of Delegates’ members who have come through with suggestions for courses that can be done.
My networking also is renewing and creating new contacts with the Region’s various industry players and local and regional societies. The South East Asia Petroleum Exploration Society and Petroleum Exploration Society of Australia have given me a warm welcome and are providing strong assistance.
A few ideas were generated through a “wish list” e-mail to members; suggestions for a couple of courses and potential speakers came in but we can do with more. Your suggestions help me build a contacts base for an Asia Pacific Speakers Bureau, which allows us to draw on the expertise in the region, thereby bringing to members access to reputable speakers.
♦ The Asia Pacific Region will present its inaugural GTW in Singapore Oct. 27-29, on “Pore Pressure and Related Issues – Special Focus: Asia Pacific,” chaired by AAPG member Mark Tingay of the University of Adelaide. Running alongside will be two short courses taught by Tingay and Richard Swarbrick, GeoPressure Technology, U.K.
♦ Another active AAPG program is the Publications Pipeline Project. Gerrit Wind and his committee members in Houston work tirelessly to source books for donation to universities. What a wonderful idea!
Here in the AP, other individuals work tirelessly to help students – and we hope to get libraries for at least five universities by year’s end.
♦ I came onboard with AAPG in the thick of planning for the Region’s semi-finals competition for the Imperial Barrel Awards. With student teams hailing from countries traversing the region, it took some innovating and technology to complete the presentations and judging without the expense of participants all coming together. We deployed the online WEBEX system – and despite a few bandwidth problems we were able to successfully connect teams and judges and complete the competition.
The team from the China University of Petroleum won and represented the Region at the AAPG Annual Convention and Exhibition in New Orleans. While they finished outside the top three, the AP team received a $1,000 award – plus an incomparable experience.
With my presence in this region, plus strong support from the AP Region Council, headquarters staff and, not least, our fantastic volunteer members, I hope to tighten the links and scientific exchange between professionals here and the AAPG community worldwide.
I’d love to hear from you on how AAPG can grow and better serve you in the Asia Pacific. Please send your comments to [email protected]