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Training in Earth Observations and Applications Commences in Thailand

The 2016 GOFC-GOLD Data Initiative – Advanced Training in Earth Observations kicked off October 10, 2016 at the Sirindhorn Center for Geo-Informatics (SCGI), Space Krenovation Park (SKP), GISTDA, in Sriracha, Thailand. This training is organized by START, in collaboration with the Thailand Geo-Informatics and Space Technology Development Agency (GISTDA) and the Department of Earth and Environment, Boston University. It is funded by NASA, as part of a 3-year cooperative agreement between NASA and START on Global Observation of Forest Cover and Land Dynamics (GOFC-GOLD).

Mr. Boonchoob Boongthong, Director of Satellite Operation Office, GISTDA, officially opened the training with a welcome message from GISTDA. Dr. Garik Gutman from NASA provided general introduction of Earth observations programming in Asia, especially GOFC-GOLD and NASA’s Land-Cover and Land-Use Change (LCLUC) Programs. Dr. David Ganz, Chief of Party for SERVIR – Mekong at the Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC) also presented on SERVIR related programming in Asia. Senay Habtezion (START) and Dr. Tanita Suepa (GISTDA) introduced the training program, setting the stage for the advanced training, which started in the second half of the morning session.

2016-data-initiative3The 2016 Data Initiative is the fifth training in Earth observation and applications and the first ever to be held outside of the United States. Thirty fellows representing 10 countries in Asia are participating in this training, which will be led by Prof. Pontus Olofsson (Boston University) along with Prof. Le Van Trung (Vietnam University Institute of Technology) and seasoned trainers from GISTDA.

The training will run through the 14th of October and will combine hands-on lab work, lectures, group-exercises and technical visits to Thailand ground receiving Station (satellite signal receiving facility) and the Space Inspirium at GISTDA.

For more information about the GOFC-GOLD program please visit or contact Senay Habtezion at