Symposium Theme

IAIA Special Biodiversity Symposium
The competing challenges of sustainability and economic development: Using impact assessment to achieve the SDGs in Asia
Hilton Kuching
Kuching, Malaysia
1 - 3 October 2018

The introduction of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development established a series of ambitious development goals for the international community. This is particularly the case for Asia, which is continuing to undergo rapid development and is increasingly becoming a center for global economic activity. Yet despite the significant economic growth and expansion within the region, there remain significant challenges to achieving the sustainable development goals (SDGs), with issues around income and social inequality, a growing gap between rich and poor, and continued environmental degradation across developing Asia.

Impact assessment (IA) can provide an important basis for providing both the private and public sector the necessary tools and techniques to better engage in a more balanced and equitable development approach. These tools and techniques will be important in supporting the achievement of the SDGs, with this symposium opening important avenues for exploring how and what tools may be used to better achieve these ambitious goals.

This symposium will target how voluntary IA tools and techniques, such as sustainability assessments, life cycle assessments, risk assessments, and materiality analysis, can be utilized in a region where regulatory efforts around IAs continue to experience challenges, with both the private and public sector arguing against further investment and business regulation.

Important Dates

  • 26 March 2018
    Abstract submission opens

  • 25 May 2018
    Abstract submission deadline

  • 5 June 2018
    Online registration opens
    Preliminary program available

  • 2 July 2018
    Paper authors notified of acceptance status

  • 27 July 2018
    Presenting author registration deadline

  • 13 September 2018
    Registration closes & Final program available

  • 1-2 October 2018
    Symposium

  • 3 October 2018
    Post-symposium training courses (to be announced)

Topics Include

  • IA and the SDGs
  • IA in the developing country context
  • IA targeting human and economic development
  • IA for the private sector to address income inequality
  • Voluntary IA practice by the private sector
  • International sustainability standards, guidelines, and criteria and their relationship with IA
  • The role of international organizations in driving voluntary IA use by the private sector
  • IAIA’s role in disseminating practical tools and techniques for voluntary adoption

Program Committee

  • AIA extends sincere thanks to the following committee members and their organizations for their generous in-kind contributions to this symposium:

    Dr. Jerome Donovan

    Dr. Cheree Topple

    A/Prof. Dominic Ong

    A/Prof. Su Hieng Tiong



Institutional Partners


Swinburne University of Technology, Sarawak Campus

Sanata Dharma University

Natural Resources and Environment Board

About IAIA

IAIA is the International Association for Impact Assessment, organised in 1980 to bring together researchers, practitioners, and users of various types of impact assessment from all parts of the world. IAIA involves people from many disciplines and professions. Our members include corporate planners and managers, public interest advocates, government planners and administrators, private consultants and policy analysts, university and college teachers and their students. IAIA has members from over 120 nations. For 37 years IAIA has been holding annual conferences and events all over the world to promote best practices in impact assessment.

Questions about this symposium? Contact kathy@iaia.org.