Another role of IAS is to organize short technical and scientific training courses that cannot be met through the normal teaching program of the University. In addition, there are often several visiting scientists, graduate students or exchange staff from various overseas universities or organizations using the Institute as a base for their research work at any one time.
IAS develops the skills of potential staff members and regional research workers through support of Postgraduate Research Awards for students who achieve their MSc degree while helping IAS carry out its project activities in the areas of Food, Water, Environmental Chemistry & Microbiology, Natural Products Chemistry, Taxonomy & Conservation and Coastal Management. Other outside postgraduate students perform some of their experimental work in the IAS laboratories.
Areas of expertise where IAS have specialized training skills:
(1) Protected area management (community based marine management work):
Associated with its Pacific Island Community-Based Conservation Course done jointly with PACE-SD and SPREP. IAS staff members are often asked to give guest lecturers in USP courses.
- developing, training and supporting sub regional teams for outer island work
- training of trainers workshop on participatory approaches to resource management for government officers and village representatives
- training workshops on data management
(2) Integrated coastal management (ICM) in the Pacific region and IAS is as a regional training center in ICM.
(3) Waste Management
Community workshops in both liquid and solid waste management
(4) Leadership & Management Training
IAS continues to pioneer the use of participatory techniques and adaptive management to assist communities adopt good governance practices in developing, implementing and monitoring resource management plans. The need for more effective village governance has been highlighted as one of the major needs for, among other things, better coastal management and a leadership and training program for traditional chiefs was developed with the Fiji Government in 2008.
(5) Food, Water & Environmental Physical, Chemical & Microbiological testing
IAS has held training in water, food and environmental analyses for both local and regional participants. Past trainings held include:
- IAS in association with SOPAC and WHO held a week-long training in water analyses at IAS for twenty people from eight Pacific countries. Follow-up training in water safety kits was conducted in Cook Islands, Tonga and Vanuatu.
- IAS laboratory was one of six worldwide chosen by the United Nations Environment Program for development as a regional center of excellence for development and training on analyses of contaminants called persistent organic pollutants (POPs), substances controlled under the Stockholm Convention.
- IAS had assisted several regional countries to improve their water quality laboratories. Two training courses covering the southern and northern Pacific were conducted and follow-up country visits were made.
(6) Laboratory Quality Managements Systems Development
IAS offers training and consultancy services in the development of laboratory management systems according to ISO/IEC 17025, training of laboratory personnel in related policies and procedures and provision of equipment calibration services
For more information or queries on training offered at IAS, contact us on ias(a)usp.ac.fj