Senior key opinion leaders of the ASEAN High Performance Computing (HPC) Task Force, key representatives of the European Commission Directorate General for Research and Innovation (DG RTD), and European and ASEAN experts met in Luxembourg for the 2nd EU-ASEAN HPC Coordination Group Meeting supported by the Enhanced Regional EU-ASEAN Dialogue Instrument (E-READI). The initiative is part of the broader EU-ASEAN Research and Innovation Policy Exchange Platform which was established through E-READI to enhance the ongoing sectoral region-to-region collaboration.
Held at the Neimenster Abbey, the event recorded the progress made since the first meeting and the EU-ASEAN 9th Science and Technology dialogue held in June 2019, in Bali, Indonesia. It was organised back-to-back with several key meetings at the headquarters of the international association PRACE (Partnership for Advanced Computing in Europe), and a visit to the petascale HPC facility at the Belval Campus, University of Luxembourg.
Dr Pierrick Fillon-Ashida, ASEAN Desk Officer, European Commission DG RTD, and Dr Putchong Uthayopas, Co-Chair ASEAN HPC Task Force, highlighted the strong and growing relations between the EU and ASEAN in the area of science and technology, acknowledged the support of E-READI in facilitating this cooperation, and emphasised forthcoming opportunities for ASEAN-EU collaboration on HPC.
The EU-ASEAN Coordination Group endorsed the study ‘Mapping Analysis of ASEAN HPC Policy Orientations’. Special focus was given to the priority areas identified in the study for region-to-region joint interest such as: extreme weather predictions (including seismic/earthquakes) and bioscience/bioinformatics, with presentations on these topics delivered respectively by Prof. Dwikorita Karnawati, Head of Agency for Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysics, Indonesia, and Dr Reinhard Schneider, Head of Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine.
Jointly with the second EU-ASEAN HPC Coordination Group meeting, ASEAN scientists and experts in the specific field of seismic, climate and weather and bio-informatics were invited to visit the Barcelona Supercomputing Centre from 2-5 December 2019. The Barcelona Supercomputing Centre is the national centre in Spain specialised in HPC and manages one of the most powerful supercomputers in Europe. In Barcelona, a PRACE training session took place focussing on HPC and natural hazards: modelling tsunamis and volcanic plumes using European flagship codes which were registered by ASEAN scientists specialised in the sector. In parallel, meetings with the management and technical units of the Life Sciences department and the Earth Sciences department were organized. The visit to the Barcelona Supercomputing Centre represented also the opportunity to exhibit one of the most important European centres of excellence to ASEAN scientists and experts.
This study tour emphasised the joint EU and ASEAN priorities on HPC in meteorology-related areas pertinent to: disaster risk reduction, climate resilience and relevant modelling; as well as to life sciences and bioinformatics research. In addition, it laid the foundations for further region-to-region HPC cooperation through exchanges on human capital development and sharing EU experience on the EU HPC governance.