The 1st Regional Conference on Environmental Modeling and Software (Asian Region), held on May 18-20, 2019 in Nanjing, Jiangsu, China, was a great success. With the topic of “Modelling for Environmental Sustainability: Asia’s Next Great Challenge”, this conference was organized by the International Environmental Modelling and Software Society, the Key Laboratory of Virtual Geographic Environment (Ministry of Education of PRC), and the School of Geography, Nanjing Normal University. Co-organisers were the Professional Committee of Geographic Information Modelling and Analysis (the Geographical Society of China), the Virtual Geographic Environment Committee (Chinese National Committee of International Society for Digital Earth), the Jiangsu Center for Collaborative Innovation in Geographical Information Resource Development and Application, the State Key Laboratory Cultivation Base of Geographical Environment Evolution (Jiangsu Province), the Jiangsu Society for Geodesy Photogrammetry and Cartography, the Jiangsu Association for the Sciences of Remote sensing and Geographic Information System, the Geographical Society of Jiangsu Province, the National Data Sharing and Service Platform for Earth System (China), the Jiangsu Institute of Geographic Information Institute.
The opening ceremony of the conference was held in the Holiday Inn Nanjing Xuanwu Lake on the morning of May 18th, chaired by Prof. A-Xing Zhu who is the director of Jiangsu Center for Collaborative Innovation in Geographical Information Resource Development and Application. During the opening ceremony, Prof. Jiusheng Li, who is the vice-president of Nanjing Normal University and Prof. Daniel P. Ames, who is the chairman of the International Environmental Modelling and Software Society and the Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Environmental Modelling and Software, made speeches which lauded the sharing of science, technologies and innovations that would take place over the life of the conference.
After this opening ceremony, first, Prof. Daniel P. Ames, gave a keynote speech titled Forecasting streamflow in every river in the world using global climate models. Second, Prof. Michael Barton, who is the director of Center for Social Dynamics & Complexity in Arizona State University, gave a keynote speech titled The Open Modeling Foundation: an International Community for Integrative Modeling of Human-Earth System Dynamics. The third keynote was Prof. Paul Whitehead, who is the director of NERC Macronutrients Cycles Programme in Oxford University, and Managing Director of Water Resource Associates LLP, who spoke on Multidisciplinary Modelling of Integrated Catchment Dynamics for Sustainable management and Planning. Finally, Mr. Trevor Taylor, who is the director of Member Services-Asia & the Americas in Open Geospatial Consortium, gave a keynote speech titled Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable (F.A.I.R.) data and models; the Role of Geospatial Standards.
On the 19th morning, six valuable keynote speeches continued. The speakers and their topics were Prof. Bojie Fu, who is Academician of Chinese Academy of Sciences and Director of the Faculty of Geographical Science in Beijing Normal University, with the title of Coupled Human-Nature System for Sustainability; Prof. SeongJoon Kim, who is the president of the Korean Society of Agricultural Engineers, with the title of Environmental Modeling for Korea-Specified Watershed Scale Water Resources Management; Prof. Kazuhito Ichii, who is the chair of JapanFlux, with the title of Model-Data Synthesis Toward Better Understanding of Terrestrial Carbon Cycle in Asia, Prof. Shie-Yui Liong, who is the Deputy Director of Tropical Marine Science Institute (TMSI) in the National University of Singapore, with the title of Overcoming Lack of Data for Flood Hazard Assessment: Cost-Effective High Quality DEM and Rainfall Proxy; Prof. Bo Huang , who is the Associate Director of the Institute of Space and Earth Information Science in The Chinese University of Hong Kong, with the title of Geographically and Temporally Weighted Regression (GTWR) for urban and environmental data analysis; and Prof. Min Chen, who is the Vice Director of the Key Laboratory of Virtual Geographic Environment (Ministry of Education), in Nanjing Normal University, with the title of What OpenGMS Can Contribute to Geographic Research.
On the 20th morning, participants heard keynote speeches from Prof. Xia Li, who is PI of NSF for Distinguished Young Scholars of China, Yangtze River Scholars of Ministry of Education, a professor in East China Normal University, titled Estimating the pressure of urban shrinkage at a global scale under the Shared Socioeconomic Pathways (SSPs) using cellular automata; Prof. Xin Li, who is PI of NSF for Distinguished Young Scholars of China, a professor in Institute of Tibet Plateau Research (Chinese Academy of Sciences), titled Watershed system model: The essentials to model complex human-nature system at the river basin scale; Prof. Jinfeng Wang, who is Chair of the Professional Committee of Geographic Information Modelling and Analysis in The Geographical Society of China, a professor in Institute of Geographic Science and Resources (Chinese Academy of Sciences), titled Mapping of Diseases; Prof. Tianxiang Yue, who is PI of NSF for Distinguished Young Scholars of China, the head of Department for Ecological and Environmental Informatics at LREIS in Institute of Geographical Sciences and Natural Resource Research (Chinese Academy of Sciences), titled The fundamental theorem for Earth’s surface system modeling and Its applications, and Prof. Qiuhong Tang, who is PI of NSF for Distinguished Young Scholars of China, a professor in Institute of Geographical Sciences and Natural Resource Research (Chinese Academy of Sciences), titled Global Change Hydrology and Integrated Human-Water Modeling.
On the 20th afternoon, this conference drew to a close with a keynote speech titled Building a digital silk road for sustainable development, by Prof. Huadong Guo, who is Academician of Chinese Academy of Sciences and President of the International Society for Digital Earth.
During this conference, six parallel sessions for oral presentation were also held on18th– 20thafternoon in Holiday Inn Nanjing Xuanwu Lake. The topics for these sessions were Integrated Modeling for Complex Environmental System, Big Data Solutions for Environmental Simulation, Prediction and Management, Environmental Modeling for Human Society and Public Health, Modeling for Planetary Health and Environmental Sustainability, Novel Approaches and Advanced Methods for Environmental Modeling, and Modeling for Climate, Ecology, and other Natural Environments. A special session titled Meeting with Editorswas also held which attracted many participants.
Nearly 150 conference participants came from 10 different countries, and gave over 70 valuable presentations in our parallel sessions, as well as the 16 inspiring keynote speeches. We do believe that this conference contributed to providing the ground for exchanging the experiences between scholars and experts from different countries, and benefitted to better explanation of environmental and modelling issues.