Friday, August 21, 2015

Myanmar official visit ( SATREPS Workshop and field survey) - Day 2 (18-August-2015)

Good morning! Sorry for the delay.

Day 2:

So at 8:15 am, we all meet-up at the hotel lobby, and headed to the workshop venue (YTU).
At 9:00 am, Dr. Aye Myint, rector of YTU gave a welcome speech. Everyone was excited and prepared for the workshop.

Center - Rector, YTU; Right - Japanese delegates; Left - Myanmar delegates
And it was time for "the group photo"!

Group photo
The workshop was "kick-started" by Kohtake sensei, Associate Professor at Keio University. He was the leading organizer of the workshop.  

Kohtake sensei giving a brief explanation about the workshop.
We were introduced the concepts of "System Design". All the participants were divided into 4 groups - A, B, C and D (Yes, groups were assigned during last night's meeting!) and sent off to four corners of the conference hall.

I was in group D along with Ochii-san, Senior Engineer at the International Affairs Division of Water Resources Engineering Department. We were representing Japan. Our group had 5 Myanmar representatives.

So there we were, 7 of us, ready for a productive discussion! We started with short self-introduction. Then we had to assign a group leader and group name. One of the Myanmar delegates was chosen to be the team leader, however I was asked to present on behalf of our group. Our group name was "Dream Maker"

Post-it, markers and notes were handed to us by Shirai-san, Master student at Keio University (also an organizer of this workshop).

Shirai-san, Master student at Keio University
The workshop was divided into 5 rounds. First round was to discuss the current issues of Myanmar. We had 15 mins and we were asked to discuss, take notes and stick them on to the Post-it. The idea was to get as much information as possible. Quantity was more important than quality. Then we were asked to organize the notes into groups following the "KJ Method".

I was explaining our "Issues" post-it.
At around noon time, a bus was waiting for us and we were taken to a very famous restaurant near-by. We tried many different Burmese delicacies. I really liked to food as it was very similar to Indian food (yes, I'm Indian) and Thai food (I stayed in Thailand for 4 years). I was too busy enjoying the food that I forgot to click pictures. Sorry!

The second round started at 2 pm. This time we were asked to make another post-it for the possible solutions of the issues we discussed in the first round.

During this round, Ichihara san (Deputy Director, International Affairs Division, Water Resources Engineering Department) gave a presentation on "Water Resource Utilization and River Management in Japan"

We were then given additional time to edit or add more "solutions".

Our "Solutions" post-it
We were then asked to re-arrange the notes into a two-axis chart. Feasibility in the X-axis and Social Impact in the Y-axis.

Our two-axis chart of "solutions"
For the third round, Kohtake sensei introduced the concepts of "Customer Value Chain Analysis (CVCA)". We had to choose one of the solutions we proposed in round two and do a CVCA. Our team decided to go for "Flood Hazard Map".

Our CVCA - Flood Hazard Map
All the groups took turns to explain about their CVCA. And yet again, I was the one explaining our ideas, results and conclusions.

Groups order - Top to bottom
Group A - Establishing common database; Group B - Providing Flood Hazard Map Service; Group C - Creating case study for Flood Assessment; Group D - Flood Hazard Map
Even though I have been to a few brainstorming sessions before, this was my first time to try CVCA.
The first day of the workshop was quite intense and tiring, yet very productive as we were able to identify the current issues of Myanmar and their possible solutions.

At around 6 pm, the first day of the workshop concluded following the individual groups presentation of their CVCA.

Then we headed back to our hotel. And yes you guessed it right, another intense meeting was waiting for us! We had a meeting on the outcomes of the first day in the hotel lobby.

Everyone seems tired!
We were again assigned some tasks for the next day and also were asked to summarize the findings of day 1 for each group.
After having dinner, we headed back to our rooms, finished the summary and had some rest (FINALLY)!

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