Country networks implement special projects for 2010

SEANAFE just approved and signed contracts with its country networks to implement their respective special projects for 2010. The special projects are part of SEANAFE’s budget for the no-cost extension period approved by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) in April 2008.

The special projects per country network are as follows:

Indonesian Network for Agroforestry Education (INAFE)

  • Publication of INAFE Traditional Agroforestry Papers;

Lao Network for Agroforestry Education (LaoNAFE)

  • Training Course on Agroforestry in Relation to Carbon Credits

Philippine Agroforestry Education and Research Network (PAFERN)

  • Study on the Climate Change Adaptation Strategies of Selected Agroforestry Farmers;

Vietnam Network for Agroforestry Education (VNAFE)

  • Training on Estimating CO2 Sequestration of Natural Forests

The Thai Network for Agroforestry Education (ThaiNAFE), meanwhile, has yet to submit their revised proposals for the implementation of their special project entitled “Sharing Lecturers and Student Exchange Program.  While the Malaysian Network for Agroforestry Education (MaNAFE) have not submitted their special project proposal.

These special projects are aimed to address the institutional development needs of the networks’ member-institutions and stakeholders. At the same time, they are aimed at integrating some of the current global environmental concerns (e.g., climate change, etc.) in agroforestry education.

The agroforestry teaching, research and extension initiatives of SEANAFE member-countries and the region in general are expected to improve from the outputs and experiences in implementing these special projects.

VNAFE completes CO2 sequestration research project

The absorbed CO2 in the Litsea-Cassava agroforestry model varies from 25 to 84 tons per hectare and provides a profit to small farmers ranging from VND 9 to 30 million per hectare, representing 20% of the total product value of Litsea and cassava. This was the major finding of the recently completed research project of the Vietnam Network for Agroforestry Education (VNAFE) on “CO2 Sequestration Estimation for the Litsea-Cassava Agroforestry Model in Mang Yang District, Gia Lai Province in the Central Highlands of Vietnam. “

The research was aimed at (a) constructing a model for biomass estimation and CO2 sequestration potential of Litsea glutinosa, and (b) defining the amount of absorbed CO2 and its environmental values in the Litsea–Cassava agroforestry model. Litsea is an indigenous, multi-purpose, green broadleaved species found mostly in semi-deciduous forest in the Central Highlands of Vietnam. Most of its biomass (stem, bark, leaves, and branches) can be used or sold in the market to produce different products. Litsea is usually planted in agroforestry models together with annual crops such as cassava, rice, and coffee.

Other findings of the research are as follows:

(a) In order to obtain effective productivity, Litsea should be harvested after ten years. At present, farmers are harvesting Litsea at between 4-6 years. It is not advisable to harvest Litsea within this period because this is when strong growth occurs.

(b) The stored carbon and CO2 sequestration in the Litsea-Cassava agroforestry model can be estimated in three ways:

1. Based on the rate (%) of stored carbon compared to the dry biomass of the four components of tree: stem (47.7%), bark (45.4%), leaves (48.7%) and branches (47.6%), with carbon per hectare calculated based on tree density. Although this method gave the highest accuracy, it was, however, costly.
2. Based on a model that estimates the carbon stored in the mean tree: C/tree = f(Dg), with carbon per hectare calculated based on tree density. This method had a relative error of 3.2%.
3. Based on a model that estimated the carbon per hectare: C/ha = f(No of shoots/stump, N/ha, Dg). This method gave a relative error of 2.7%.

(c) The Litsea-Cassava agroforestry model in the second and the third periods should leave 2 to 3 Litsea shoots per stump. This will result in the greatest production of biomass and CO2 concentration, with the possibility of optimal CO2 absorption from 3 to 84 tons, increasing with age.

The research was conducted by a team of faculty members and students from the Tay Nguyen University (TNU) in partnership with the staff of the People’s Committee and Department of Agricultural and Rural Development of Mang Yang District. The team was led by Dr. Bao Huy, Head of TNU’s Department of Forest Resources & Environment Management and VNAFE Chair. The Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) through SEANAFE funded the project.

For details of the research results, please visit: Web Site:

The 4th Philippine Agroforestry Congress Highlights

The 4th Philippine Agroforestry Congress was held on November 18-20, 2009 at the Chali Beach Resort and Conference Center in Cagayan de Oro City, Misamis Oriental, Philippines with the theme “agroforestry promotion for climate change mitigation and adaptation: building lessons from the field”.

This year’s Agroforestry Congress was convened to serve as a venue to promote sharing of experiences of various stakeholders in agroforestry technology development, promotion and adoption; intensify agroforestry promotion through agroforestry roadshow; and highlight the experiences of agroforestry practitioners/farmers in agroforestry farm development.

The 4th National Agroforestry Congress elicited a total of 155 participants representing the local government units, non-government organizations, students, farming communities, people’s organizations, academic institutions, foreign and international organizations, and national government agencies. Among the highlights of the Agroforestry Congress include: a) five (5) plenary paper presentations that dealt with recent climate change research, and the roles of agroforestry in climate change mitigation and adaptation; b) 15 concurrent paper presentations that revolved around three themes, namely: Recognizing the Multifunctionality of Agroforestry; Promoting Enterprise Development Through Agroforestry; and, Innovative Approaches in Agroforestry Development and Promotion; c) 16 poster paper presentations; d) Agroforestry Roadshow/Caravan; and e) Farmers’ Forum.

A discussion on the global impact of de-forestation problems as a result of the global demand for health supplements was addressed with an introduction given by Dr. Edward Lasker.

The Congress delegates also signed the Congress Declaration for Agroforestry Promotion as their sign of support and commitment to promote agroforestry not only as a climate change adaptation strategy, but also to work towards institutionalizing agroforestry as a development strategy in the Philippines.

The Philippine Agroforestry Education and Research Network (PAFERN), UPLB Institute of Agroforestry (UPLB-IAF) and the Misamis Oriental State College of Agriculture and Technolgoy (MOSCAT) co-organized the event. Among the major sponsors are the Southeast Asian Network for Agroforestry Education (SEANAFE), Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP), Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change Research (APN), and the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF-Philippines).

SEANAFE co-organizes AF roundtable discussion in Cambodia

SEANAFE convened a roundtable meeting among 10 representatives from government, nongovernment, and academic institutions aimed at exploring ways where agroforestry (AF) and payments for ecosystems services (PES) can provide enhancement to support the preparation and implementation of Cambodia’s National Action Plan to Combat Land Degradation (NAP) as well as address other key environmental concerns.Held at the Royal University of Agriculture in Phnom Penh on 19-20 November 2009, the meeting was also meant to identify collaborative options, including the establishment of an agroforestry network in Cambodia, in implementing the NAP.As a signatory to the UN Convention to Combat Desertification, the Cambodia Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fishery (MAFF) is expected to finalize its NAP by 2011. In the process of preparing the NAP, a project on Building Capacity and Mainstreaming Sustainable Land Management (SLM) has been ongoing since 2008 with funding support from the UNDP Global Environmental Facility. It is expected to develop 10 bankable projects, enhance capacity of at least 300 government staff, and mainstream SLM into national and sectoral policies and development plans.

The meeting participants recognized the relevance of AF & PES in 4 major areas in Cambodia, namely: in the west which is characterized by open areas and high soil erosion; in the central which is dominated by rice-based farming system around the Tonlesap lake; in the east where slash and burn practices are prevalent, and in the northwest where soil fertility is very low. Thus, they suggested the following courses of action for MAFF’s consideration in preparing and implementing the NAP:

  • Speed up the completion of the sustainable land management study including a land use classification to help identify appropriate AF interventions
  • Consider and validate SLM related research results and available information from relevant organizations (universities, international research organizations, NGOs, etc.)
  • Conduct more awareness raising and capacity building activities (e.g., dialogues, workshops, cross visits/ study tours) on the development of the NAP to gain more stakeholders’ support in its implementation
  • Ensure effective research-extension linkage such as establishing and sustaining community-based projects on various SLM technologies including AF and PES in collaboration with relevant organizations such as ICRAF
  • Support the establishment of an AF network as MAFF partner in implementing agroforestry-related components of the NAP
  • Mainstream the NAP in university curricular programs and research activities so that students after graduation could provide the needed manpower to help implement and sustain the plan.

A special meeting with the State Secretary of MAFF, Mr. Uk Sokhonn, in the afternoon of 20 November 2009 was held to present the outputs of the roundtable discussion. He expressed interest, on behalf of MAFF, to work with ICRAF in relation to the development and implementation of the NAP and bring up the matter with the MAFF Minister. SEANAFE is expected to provide assistance in establishing an agroforestry network in Cambodia under the leadership of the Royal University of Agriculture.



SEANAFE prepares for new challenges in 2010

SEANAFE braces itself for a challenging transition year in 2010 as it becomes an international nongovernmental organization (INGO) after the Sida grant period ends in December 2009. This was the pervading spirit emanated from the recently concluded 18th SEANAFE Board Meeting held on 7-9 September 2009 at Centre Point Langsuan Hotel in Bangkok, Thailand.

To prepare for the new INGO status of SEANAFE in 2010 sans support from Sida and ICRAF, the SEANAFE Board approved the following exit strategies:

a. Institutionalization of membership expansion & collection of annual membership fees
b. Commitment signing of heads of member institutions in support of country network operations
c. Regular mapping of SEANAFE’s institutional linkages for resource mobilization
d. Expansion of the Network’s Subject Matter Coverage and Strengthening of Inter-Country Network Collaborations
e. Offering of SEANAFE training courses on fee-basis
f. Development of a full proposal for Phase 3 operation for submission to funding donors
g. Designation of a member institution to take up the role of SEANAFE’s Secretariat from ICRAF
h. Establishment of a “virtual” Board to sustain policy and decision making processes

The above strategies prompted the SEANAFE Board to produce the following major decisions:

a. Designation of the Philippine Agroforestry Education and Research Network (PAFERN), particularly the Institute of Agroforestry of the University of the Philippines Los Banos, as temporary Secretariat of SEANAFE until at least 6 months to a maximum of 1 year starting January 2010.
b. Listing of necessary amendments to the SEANAFE Charter to conform to the network’s new status as INGO
c. Firming up of basic requirements and formulation of guidelines, including an organizational structure, for SEANAFE to operate as an INGO
d. Development of implementing guidelines to operationalize the exit strategies
e. Identification of areas of concern for inter-country network collaboration to generate funding
f. Submission of proposal to Sida before end of November 2009 requesting use of project budget balance to operate as an INGO in 2010

Progress on Items (b) to (e) by designated members of the SEANAFE Board shall be presented and finalized during a special meeting among country network coordinators on 8 October 2009 after the conduct of SEANAFE’s Regional Training Course on Sustainable Agroforestry Development in the Uplands of Southeast Asia on 23 September-8 October 2009 in the Philippines.


SEANAFE is now officially registered as a non-stock, non-profit nongovernmental organization in the Philippines as confirmed through a certificate issued by the Securities and Exchange Commission of the Philippines on 22 September 2009.

This new status is the result of SEANAFE Board’s decision during its 16th meeting in August 2008 in Indonesia to acquire a legal personality for the Network in the Philippines. The SEANAFE Board expects that this would enable the Network t to enter into various institutional collaborations and funding agreements, both at the regional and country levels. This decision was also to prepare the Network to operate on its own after the Sida grant period ends in December 2009.

The Philippine Agroforestry Education and Research Network (PAFERN), through the Institute of Agroforestry (IAF) of the University of the Philippines Los Banos (UPLB), will host SEANAFE’s Secretariat in the Philippines when it starts its full operation as NGO in January 2010.

3 more SEANAFE MS Research Fellows complete degrees

Three SEANAFE MS Research Fellowship Batch 2 grantees successfully defended their thesis recently. They are Ms. Penny Pujowati from Institut Pertanian Bogor, Indonesia; Ms. Shierel Vallesteros from the University of the Philippines Los Banos; and Ms. Truong Thi Pinh from Hue University of Agriculture and Forestry, Vietnam.

The grantees’ research topics were as follows:

1. “Agroforestry landscape management plan for Karang Mumus River Basin, the down stream of Mahakam watershed, East Kalimantan” for Ms. Pujowati which she defended in August 2009.

2. “Development of oil ideotypes in selected provenances of Jatropha curcas” for Ms. Vallesteros which she defended in September 2009.

3. “Assessment of the fixed carbon dioxide capability of some protection afforestation types in upstream region of Bo River in Thua Thien, Hue Province, Vietnam” for Ms. Pinh which she defended in September 2009.

The three grantees are among the 6 MS students that SEANAFE accepted as Batch 2 MS Research Fellows for 2008-2009. The other grantees are expected to complete their MS degrees by end of October 2009.

SEANAFE pilots a regional training on Sustainable Upland Development

Sixteen lecturers and extension personnel from Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam compose the core group of trainees attending the pilot offering of SEANAFE’s Regional Training Course on Sustainable Upland Development currently being held at Los Banos, Laguna, Philippines from 28 September to 8 October 2009.

SEANAFE conceptualized the training course in response to the need for upland development workers to acquire specialized knowledge and skills in natural and social sciences to be able to develop practical understanding about the interdependent problems affecting the upland areas. It is designed to also highlight the roles of agroforestry science and practice in upland development in the region. Specifically at the end of the training course, the participants are expected to:

1. Share and learn from their respective national initiatives in promoting sustainable upland development.
2. Explain the concepts and principles of sustainable upland development.
3. Discuss and analyze recent issues, challenges and prospects of sustainable upland
development in their respective countries and, in the process, acquire a more regional
perspective of the subject matter.
4. Acquire skills in applying the appropriate tools and approaches, including the strategies
in mobilizing communities and other institutions towards sustainable upland development.
5. Prepare individual action plans towards sustainable upland development in their
respective countries.

The two-week training course is divided into 4 modules, namely:

Module 1. Overview of Sustainable Upland Development in Southeast Asia
Module 2. Tools, Techniques and Approaches in Promoting Sustainable Upland Development
Module 3. Managing Organizations and Mobilizing Communities and Other Institutions for Sustainable Upland Development
Module 4. Developing Responsive Plans towards Sustainable Upland Development in Southeast Asia

SEANAFE envisions that the pilot offering of the training course will lead to the refinement of the design and the development of the same into a regional MS program to be offered among its member universities in the immediate future. The participants are expected to help realize this after the training.

SEANAFE is implementing the training course in collaboration with the Philippine Agroforestry Education and Research Network (PAFERN) and the Institute of Agroforestry (IAF) of the University of the Philippines Los Banos (UPLB). The Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) provides the funding.

Twelve of the participants are under support from Sida while the other four are on fee-based attendance. The training participants are as follows:

Indonesia: Dr. Sitti Latifah (Mataram University) and Ms. Rommy Qurniati (University of Lampung)

Malaysia: Mr. Affendy Hassan (University Malaysia Sabah) and Dr. Azmy Mohamed (University Putra Malaysia)

Laos: MR. SOUKVILAY VILAVONG (Dongkhamxang Agriculture Technical School) and MR. BOUNKIENG SOULIYASACK (Luangprabang Agriculture and Forestry College)

Philippines: For. Percival M. Cardona (Department of Environment and Natural Resources, DENR), For. Fredelito Cirilo (DENR), Engr. Alberto Gonzales (Mt. Masaraga Quinale Watershed Stakeholders Association, Inc.), Dr. Antonio P. Payonga(Bicol University College of Agriculture and Forestry), Ms. Maria Soledad T. Prena (Albay City Agriculture Office), Ms. Angelita Racelis (DENR)

Thailand: Ms. Katwadee Laohasakul (Prince of Songkla University) and Ms. Duangkamon Suwannarit (Khon Kaen University)

Vietnam: Mr. Pham Cuong (Hue University of Agriculture and Forestry) and Ms. Hoang Thi Phuong (Chu Mom Ray National Park Office)

SEANAFE abstracts accepted for 2nd World AF Congress

Seven abstracts from SEANAFE were accepted for oral and poster presentations at the 2nd World Agroforestry Congress in August 2009.

The two abstracts for oral presentations are:

  1. Case Study Approach to Curriculum and Teaching Materials Development in Agroforestry Education in Southeast Asia by Jess C. Fernandez from SEANAFE Facilitation Unit; and
  2. Encouraging Students’ Competencies in Agroforestry Entrepreneurship by Richmund Palma from Misamis Oriental State College of Agricultural Technology affiliated with the Philippine Agroforestry Education and Research Network (PAFERN).

Both papers will be presented during the session on “Integrating Disciplines through Agroforestry Education.” SEANAFE will fully cover the participation of the authors during the Congress.
On the other hand, the 5 abstracts for poster presentations include:

  1. Improving the Curriculum on Teaching “Markets for Agroforestry Tree Products” in Universities in Southeast Asia by Jess C. Fernandez
  2. Institutionalization of INAFE on Emerging Roles of ICT on Distance E-Learning of Agroforestry in Indonesia by Christine Wulandari from Lampung University affiliated with the Indonesian Network for Agroforestry Education (INAFE)
  3. Recognizing the Multifunctionality of Agroforestry in the Philippines: Lessons from the Field by Lutgarda Tolentino, Leila Landicho, Cathy de Luna and Rowena Cabahug from University of the Philippines Los Banos affiliated with PAFERN.
  4. Harmonizing Disciplines and Resources towards Institutionalization of Agroforestry Science in the Philippines by Lutgarda Tolentino, Leila Landicho, Cathy de Luna and Rowena Cabahug from University of the Philippines Los Banos affiliated with PAFERN.
  5. Carbon Stock in Dukuh Traditional Agroforestry System in Indonesia by Mahrus Aryadi from Lambung Mangkurat University affiliated with INAFE

The first two abstracts are included in the session on “Integrating Disciplines through Agroforestry Education.” The third and fourth abstracts are accepted under the session on Islands, Agroforestry and Livelihood” while the last abstract under the session on “Carbon Sequestration in Agroforestry.” SEANAFE will be sponsoring the registration fee of the authors to present their posters during the Congress as approved by the SEANAFE Board.

SEANAFE co-sponsors technical session in 2nd WCA

SEANAFE, together with the African Network for Agriculture, Forestry and Natural Resources Education (ANAFE), sponsored a technical session on “Integrating Disciplines through Agroforestry Education” on 25 August 2009 as part of the Second World Congress of Agroforestry held in Nairobi, Kenya.

Seven out of the 8 papers selected for the session were presented before a crowd of 45 participants. The papers were as follows:

1. Case study approach to curriculum and teaching materials development in agroforestry education in Southeast Asia by Jess Fernandez (SEANAFE)
2. Encouraging students’ competencies in agroforestry entrepreneurship by Richmund Palma (Philippines)
3. Enhancing integrated approaches in agricultural learning systems by Per Rudebjer and August Temu (ICRAF)
4. Implementing peri-urban agroforestry in South Africa: A case study of how upscaling agroforestry impacts on policy and curricula by Michael Underwood (South Africa)
5. The PIIP project innovation system approach for reinforcing agroforestry research at the University of Niamey in Niger by Aissetou Drame Yaye (ICRAF)
6. Opportunities and challenges of mainstreaming climate change into agriculture and natural resource education in Africa by James Kung’u (Kenya)
7. Introducing agroforestry higher education programs in Iran by Rahim Mirzaei Mola Ahmad (Iran)

The session discussions mainly revolved around the need for learning institutions to be innovative in their approaches to enhance the content and make agroforestry education more relevant to current global concerns and its stakeholders.