BCWERC senior researcher, Reynaldo L. Lanuza, served as resource person during the Vulnerability Assessment Trainers Training Module Preparation Workshop at ERDB, College, Laguna on January 23-26, 2018. The training team composed of researchers from the ERDB Main Office and the Research Centers participated in the workshop.

The workshop aimed to discuss and prepare the training module that will be used during the Vulnerability Assessment Trainers Training and Technology Transfer for the Regional Offices. The technology to be transferred involved the use of GIS in the conduct of vulnerability assessment. However, the use of a licensed GIS software was raised during the Vulnerability Assessment of Watersheds for Climate Change Adaptation Technology Transfer Workshop and Strategic Planning held in Bayview Park Hotel in Manila last January 16-19, 2018. To address this issue, the ERDB Training Team was commissioned to explore and develop procedures in assessing watershed vulnerability using an open source such as the QGIS.

QGIS (previously known as "Quantum GIS") is a cross-platform free and a user-friendly Open-source Desktop Geographic Information System (GIS) application that provides spatial data conversion, viewing, editing, manipulation, storing, and analysis. It is licensed under the GNU General Public License and runs on Linux, Windows, Unix, Mac OSX, and Android and supports various vector, raster, and database formats and functionalities. QGIS, as open-source software, is free, available on-line, and can be downloaded from their website.

Using QGIS, the team was able to develop the steps and/or procedures needed for the vulnerability assessment based on the 2nd Edition ERDB Vulnerability Manual which is anchored on the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC) Framework. This framework describes vulnerability as a function of exposure, sensitivity and adaptive capacity. The team successfully converted the procedures in assessing vulnerability to soil erosion from other GIS software to QGIS.

The topics to be included in the training module are the following: a) Watershed Characterization, b) Basic Concepts of GIS and QGIS as a Mapping Tool, c) Map Registration and Digitizing in QGIS, d) Importing Spreadsheets to QGIS, e) Basic Features of Vector GIS and Map Projection in QGIS, f) Working with Raster Data in QGIS, g) Map Layouting, and h) Vulnerability Assessment using QGIS. Reynaldo L. Lanuza, BCWERC