The International Conference on Sustainable and Environmental Technology 2023 (ISET 2023) and Regional Conference on Environmental Engineering 2023 (RCEnvE2023) were held at Pulai Springs Resort, Johor Bahru, from 26th to 27th September 2023. The conference aimed to provide innovative solutions for a sustainable future by prioritizing the conduct and fulfillment of several United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) related to membrane science and technology. The event was co-organized by Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM), the Advanced Membrane Technology Research Centre (AMTEC), the ASEAN University Network/Southeast Asia Engineering Education Development Network (AUN/SEED-Net), and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), in collaboration with the Ministry of Higher Education of Malaysia, Malaysia Membrane Society (MyMembrane), and Frontier Materials Research Alliance (FMRA) of UTM.
The theme for this year’s event is “Innovative Solutions for a Sustainable Future”. The focus is on advancements in energy and water technology, as well as innovative strategies to industrialize upcoming research. The event aims to address critical issues affecting all sectors, industries, societies, and the environment. It provides a platform for professionals, researchers, academicians, and industries in Malaysia and abroad to exchange ideas and revitalize research efforts in the membrane and environmental technology fields. The goal is to develop new sustainable innovations and explore collaboration opportunities and commercialization activities for water treatment, membrane technology, biotechnology, renewable energy, nanotechnology, and material processing. Ultimately, ISET 2023 and RCEnvE 2023 aim to significantly contribute to environmental enhancement and a more sustainable future by 2030.
The ISET 2023 and RCEnvE2023 conferences began with welcoming remarks from Assoc. Prof. Ts. Dr. Mukhlis A. Rahman, who is the conference Chair. This was followed by a brief online session with JICA Malaysia. The ceremony then continued with a session with Dr. Sirin Chakamanont, the project manager of AUN/SEED-Net, before proceeding with an online session with a representative of the Japan-ASEAN Science, Technology, and Innovation Platform (JASTIP). The conference had 145 participants from six different countries: Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, the United Kingdom, Thailand, and Japan. The conference was conducted physically, with 125 oral presenters and 2 poster presenters, while the remaining participants were attendees from various institutions and universities, as well as the public and private sectors.
The opening remarks by the Chair of ISET 2023 and RCEnvE2023, Assoc. Prof. Ts. Dr. Mukhlis A. Rahman
During the first day of the conference, two plenary speeches were delivered by Prof. Dr. Bunsho Ohtani, who is a Professor Emeritus at Hokkaido University in Japan and a member of the Nonprofitable Organization Touche NPO in Japan, and Prof. Dr. Yoshida Naoko from Nagoya Institute of Technology. On the second day, two other distinguished scientists, Prof. Dr. Tanemura Masaki from Nagoya Institute of Technology and Prof. Ts. Dr. Mohd Hafiz Dzarfan Othman, who is the Chairman of the Frontiers Material Research Alliance at UTM, gave their speeches.
The plenary speakers, a) Prof. Dr. Bunsho Ohtani (Professor Emeritus, Hokkaido University, Japan and Nonprofitable Organization touche NPO, Japan) and b) Prof. Dr. Yoshida Naoko (Nagoya Institute of Technology) delivering their plenary speeches on “Design and Characterization of Functional Materials based on Energy-resolved Distribution of Electron Traps and “The Microbial Wastewater Treatment and Innovation are based on the Advanced Material for a Circular Economy”, respectively.
The invited speakers ChM. Dr. Mohd Firdaus bin Abdul Wahab (UTM) and Prof. Dr. Nurul Widiastuti (Institut Teknologi September)
On the evening of day one, all the participants dressed up in “Masquerade Glam” attire for the Grand Annual Dinner held at Dewan Inderaputra, Pulai Springs. Assoc. Prof. Ts. Dr. Mukhlis A. Rahman welcomed the dinner guests, followed by an officiating remark by Prof. Datuk Ts. Dr. Ahmad Fauzi Ismail, the Vice-Chancellor of UTM. The participants enjoyed a scrumptious meal while watching an AMTEC video presentation, a magic show, and a wonderful serenade by Dr. Akmali Mokhter from AMTEC, UTM, and Mrs. Gusti Umindya Nur Tajalla from Institut Teknologi Kalimantan, Indonesia. The highlight of the event was the award presentation to the King and Queen of the ISET 2023 and the RCEnvE 2023 Grand Annual Dinner.
The ISET 2023 and RCEnvE2023 Grand Annual Dinner had some distinguished guests of honor. From left to right, they were Assoc. Prof. Ts. Dr. Juhana Jaafar, who is the Director of AMTEC at UTM, Mr. Shimazu Hideki, a JICA Advisor at AUN/SEED-Net, Prof. Datuk Ts. Dr. Ahmad Fauzi Ismail, the Vice-Chancellor of UTM, Prof. Ts. Dr. Mohd Hafiz Dzarfan Othman, the Chairman of Frontiers Material Research Alliance at UTM, and Dr. Sirin Chakamanont, the Project Manager of AUN/SEED-Net JICA.
Our dinner guests were all dressed up in Masquerade Glam attire. From the left are Prof. Tanemura Masaki (Nagoya Institute of Technology), Prof. Datuk Ts. Dr. Ahmad Fauzi Ismail, Prof. Dr. Yoshida Naoko (Nagoya Institute of Technology), and Assoc. Prof. Ts. Dr. Juhana Jaafar.
A group photo of the guests during the ISET 2023 and RCEnvE 2023 Grand Annual Dinner
The winners of the MyMembrane award, as well as the Best Poster Presenters and Best Oral Presenters awards, were announced during the closing ceremony. The MyMembrane Award is a prestigious award, and we would like to congratulate the three recipients: Musawira Iftikhar, Rendy Muhamad Iqbal, and Khairunissa Syairah Binti Ahmad Sohaimi. These winners were carefully selected by a panel of judges consisting of private and public sector researchers. The Best Oral Presenter award went to Musawira Iftikhar, Gusti Umindya Nur Tajalha, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Low Siew Chun, Zeni Rahmawati, and Cininta Nareswari. The Best Poster Award was given to Low Jia Tee. Finally, the Director of AMTEC, Assoc. Prof. Ts. Dr. Juhana Jaafar, delivered the closing speech and congratulated the winners before the participants and conference committee took a group photo.
Group photo of the ISET 2023 and RCEnvE2023 closing ceremony.
The conference organizers express their gratitude to the sponsors, namely AUN/SEED-net JICA, Frontier Material Research Alliance, Progene Link, RFL Petrolab, Integrated Engineering Services Sdn. Bhd., Kras Instrument and Service, Kita Ryo Trading, Hary Ohm Engineering and Trading, and Intelisys for their generous contributions. Their support ensured the success of ISET 2023 and RCEnvE2023, which provided memorable experiences to the participants. We look forward to meeting them again at future conferences.
Written by: Assoc. Prof. Ch.M. Dr. Roswanira Abdul Wahab, Assoc. Prof. Ts. Dr. Mukhlis A. Rahman Assoc. Prof. Ts. Dr. Juhana Jaafar and Dr. Farhana Aziz.