On January 28, 2015, scholars from across Southeast Asia, including Burma, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia, met in Kunming to discuss changes in the region’s biodiversity. Over the last several years, biodiversity and environmental changes have become an increasingly contentious issue as growth in trade, manufacturing, and infrastructure across the region have led to cross-border issues.
Dr. Ren Lai, Deputy Director of the Kunming Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences (KIZ, CAS), began the seminar by introducing the history of the Kunming Museum of Natural History, highlighting several key accomplishments that the Museum has made in cooperation with KIZ, CAS, and the Chinese government. The Museum staff then provided specially designed tours of several well-curated exhibits before returning for a final lecture on recent advances in museum management techniques.
While the seminar did not result in a formalized outcome or agreement, the Museum has been hosting similar events for several years as both a form of goodwill diplomacy and academic exchanges with China’s southern neighbors.