The ASEAN Climate Leadership Programme (ACLP) continues to gain momentum. Alumni from the 2020 and 2021 classes reconvened virtually on 7 September 2023, discussing their ongoing leadership endeavours, and delving into the theme of “Promoting Climate-Smart Agriculture (CSA) for Food Security.”
Continue to Promote CSA Practices
The ACLP alumni, consisting of professionals from the ASEAN Member States working in agriculture, forestry and other sectors heavily impacted by climate change came together to share their insights and reminisce about their past sessions. As climate change continues to pose significant challenges to agriculture, finding sustainable solutions and climate resilient agricultural practices for food security is paramount. The theme resonated deeply with the participants, as they recognised the urgency to address the intersection of climate change and agriculture to ensure a resilient food supply for future generations.
In his opening remarks, Dr Pham Quang Minh, Head of the Food, Agriculture and Forestry Division of the ASEAN Secretariat, emphasised the importance of climate-smart agriculture (CSA) practices.
“One of ASEAN’s key priorities is promoting CSA practices with a focus on adaptation and mitigation. Shifting from chemical-centric agriculture, we should continue promoting the adaptation of Nature-based solutions (NbS) and decarbonisation in the region. Therefore, regional frameworks can serve as a reference guide to AMS. Together with GIZ and other partners, we are anchored in our mission for regional food security, propelling our agri-food systems towards resilience, inclusivity, and sustainability. The ASEAN post-2025 agenda will rely on multi-stakeholder cooperation and leadership. The leadership as learned in the ACLP can contribute to achieving our shared goals in food security to a sustainable future.”
Echoing the prevalent sentiment, Mr Florian Miss, Principal Advisor of the ASEAN AgriTrade and Protection Consumer II projects, underscored the pivotal role of strong leadership in navigating the challenges of climate change and food security. He emphasised, “The agricultural sector faces the challenge of having an ageing labour-force. New digital and sustainable approaches like CSA and NbS might also make the sector more attractive to young people again. By fostering their interest in the sustainable food sector, we are taking a proactive step to guarantee food security for the future.”
Reflection of Leadership Journey Application
During the workshop, the alumni talked about how their leadership experiences have been applied in their respective professional lives. Alumni from Indonesia underscored the value of soft skills, with a focus on the communication skills refined during the ACLP implementation.
Other alumni from Viet Nam shared their experience of transitioning to a new role, drawing insights from the U theory. Additionally, alumni emphasised the importance of open-minded listening, a key tenet of the ACLP, highlighting the need to appreciate diverse perspectives, especially in a multi-stakeholder environment with varying cultural nuances. Another highlight from the gathering was the opportunity to provide feedback and suggestions for the upcoming 3rd batch of the ACLP. From discussing potential themes to refining the course content and methods, the alumni actively participated in shaping the future of this transformative program.
The enthusiasm and dedication displayed by the alumni bode well for the success of the upcoming 3rd batch of the ACLP.
Initially facilitated by the GIZ Climate-Smart Land Use (CSLU) in the ASEAN project, in 2020 and 2021, the ACLP roll-out took place in collaboration with various partners in the region.
The event was organised in collaboration with the GIZ ASEAN Cluster under the ASEAN-German Climate Action Programme (CAP) and ASEAN AgriTrade with funding from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) through the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH.
Photo: GIZ/Diella Dachlan.