Thailand Bioresource Research Center (TBRC), in conjunction with National Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (BIOTEC), National Science and Technology Development Agency (NSTDA), ASEAN Network on Microbial Utilization (AnMicro), and ASEAN Centre for Biodiversity, held a successful workshop titled “International iCollect Workshop: The establishment and maintenance of an ASEAN Microbial database” on November 13-15, 2018 at Thailand Science Park in Pathum Thani, Thailand. The workshop was funded by ASEAN Science and Technology Innovation Fund (ASTIF) and ASEAN Committee on Science and Technology (COST). Participants from various ASEAN countries including Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam were invited to attend the 3-day workshop. As ASEAN countries are considered hotspots for microbial diversity, it is important to build ASEAN capability and develop an efficient system for establishing and maintaining ASEAN microbial database. This training workshop will facilitate well-organized biological data management and distribution via iCollect software, with the capability to support multiple-collections and multi-user environment, and provide systematic access to microbial resources and information in compliance with the ABS.
Participants of the workshop, consisting of culture collection curators and researchers, also had a chance to present the current status of their culture collection with the aim to broaden and share knowledge and strengthen a close-knit network between ASEAN culture collections as a whole. Overall, the workshop was well received by the participants who expressed that the information learned can be utilized to improve the potential and proficiency of their culture collections.