The power of collaborative learning was on full display at a recent volcano workshop that was entirely student-led. The workshop, which brought together PhD students from the Earth Observatory of Singapore (EOS) and several universities in Japan, focused on facilitating discussions and posters in order to benefit the students' research.
The 4th edition of the Japan-Singapore Volcano PhD Symposium gathered 21 participants from EOS and Japan’s Tohoku University and Hokkaido University, to advance volcano research and develop collaborations. The event, which took place at EOS on 21 and 22 February 2023, was the first in-person edition since the pandemic.
Participants to the 4th Japan-Singapore PhD Volcano Symposium (Source: Benoit Taisne/Earth Observatory of Singapore)
The students from both countries were looking forward to learning from each other.
“Japan hosts many active volcanoes. Our Japanese colleagues have a lot of experience in volcano studies and are great partners to study with,” said Ms Yizhou Luo
from EOS and the Asian School of the Environment (ASE). Mr Sora Nishikawa, who joined from the Graduate School of Science at Hokkaido University, added, “Such an experience where we can discuss with international and various researchers is rarely available in Japan.”
The two students both led the organisation of the workshop and presented their latest research. Mr Nishikawa’s presentation was about the dynamics that control the temporal evolution of eruptions. Ms Luo, who was joining the event for the fourth time since its inception in 2019
, presented a modified method to detect subtle changes in a natural system, for both non-volcanic and volcanic events.
Ms Yizhou Luo, from EOS and ASE, presenting her research during a talk (Source: Andika Bayu Aji/Earth Observatory of Singapore)
This year, the organizers allocated more time for discussions and included a poster for each talk. This new format proved to be highly effective in fostering meaningful conversations among the participants. “I like the idea a lot, as I can directly address my doubts or interest in front of the poster after every talk session,” said Ms Luo. “We can have input from different perspectives and the participants may pose questions that we didn’t think of, which is similar to having someone review our papers,” added Mr Andika Bayu Aji
from EOS and ASE, who presented a new way to forecast eruptions by using the increase in seismicity due to migrating seismicity. Adding to this point, Mr Akito Tsuchiya from the Graduate School of Science of Tohoku University said that “EOS professors gave me important points that I had not noticed before.”
PhD student Andika Bayu Aji from EOS and ASE presenting his research to Professor Takeshi Nishimura from Tohoku University, Japan (Source: Lauriane Chardot/Earth Observatory of Singapore)
The students will next take in all the feedback to improve their research. Mr Tsushiya, who presented a numerical study of andesitic lava flow eruptions, said, “Discussions and advice during this workshop will be used to advance the numerical model.” Mr Nishikawa added, “It’s important to incorporate new perspectives from different fields into our research, given the challenge of unravelling a complex system such as a volcanic eruption.”
The students are all looking forward to more presentations and to continue forging their connections during next year’s workshop and other events before that, such as the AOGS conference later this year.
EOS Senior Research Fellow Christina Widiwijayanti discussing with a colleague from Japan (Source: Lauriane Chardot/Earth Observatory of Singapore)
Thanks to Sora Nishikawa and Yizhou Luo for organising this successful event.