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Universiti Brunei Darussalam
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New species of mycoheterotrophs discovered in KBFSC

Tropical rainforests are famous for their enormous tree species richness. Indeed, at the first glance, it seems that with numerous epiphytes their whole diversity is concentrated in the canopy and there is nothing worth attention of a botanist at the ground. However, at closer inspection, there are dozens of herbaceous species growing on the forest floor, some of them yet unknown to science. Among them, tiny achlorophyllous plants nourished by symbiotic fungi, called mycoheterotrophs, are of particular interest in recent years. These plants are both directly and indirectly heavily dependent on co-existence with a number of organisms, which may be the reason why they are often restricted to primary undisturbed tropical rainforests.

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BIBFF 2018 Commemorates Establishment of Islamic Finance Industry in Brunei

The Islamic Finance and Halal Marketing (IFHM) research cluster, under UBD School of Business and Economics (UBDSBE), hosted the Brunei Islamic Banking and Finance Forum 2018 in commemoration of 25 years since the establishment of the Islamic finance industry in Brunei Darussalam.

The forum was aimed at providing a platform for researchers, regulators, academics and practitioners to discuss the challenges the Islamic finance industry is facing today and to deliberate potential measures and policies in strengthening the industry in the future.

The forum featured panel discussions carrying four themes: Islamic Finance in Brunei: History, Performance and Future Outlook; Governance and Regulatory Framework for Islamic Finance in Brunei; Islamic Finance and Socio-economic Development and Islamic Capital Markets. It was attended by more than 60 participants comprising of regulators, industry players, researchers, academia and students who had the opportunity to meet local experts, and exchange views in the field of Islamic banking and finance.

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UBD to Study and Name New Bird Species

An elusive new species of bird has recently been spotted in Brunei Darussalam near the Kuala Belalong Field Studies Centre (KBFSC) and the Ulu Ulu Resort in Ulu Temburong.

The bird is a spectacled flowerpecker with a distinctive white ring around its black eyes. Although the spectacled flowerpecker has been spotted and photographed a few times by ornithologists in other parts of Borneo, notably in Danum Valley in Sabah, it has never been collected for scientific study. The bird is most probably endemic to Borneo and a canopy specialist thus rarely seen and having evaded detection.

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UBD ranked 105 in latest QS University Asia Rankings, No. 1 in Asia for student exchanges

UBD broke into the Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) Asian University Rankings in 2014. Prior to that, UBD was an unranked university. Less rigorous ranking exercises placed UBD in the 2500 to 3500 range.

In the latest release by QS, UBD is now ranked 105 in Asia, up from 123 last year. This makes UBD one of the fastest rising universities in Asia, moving from 171-180 in 2014, 118 in 2015, to its highest position to date at 105. With almost 12,000 universities in Asia, UBD is now among the top 1% of universities in Asia.

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UBD signed a Collaboration Agreement with FPT University for the setting up of the FPT-UBD Innovation Lab, where training and research are base on an industrial model with hands on experience that is relevant to "Industry 4.0".

Supported by FPT, the largest IT enterprise in Vietnam, the unique innovation lab will be based at the University Technology Hub Building, UBD.

The Collaboration Agreement formalises the setting up of the FPT-UBD Innovation Lab in UBD, offering a 16-week project-based training programme by expert industry mentors for students to learn and apply the latest innovations in IT such as mobile applications, cloud computing, Internet of Things (IoT), big data and cyber security. Students will also have the opportunity to work on real world projects from industry and improve their teamwork skills in software development projects. Training will be tailored for different levels of expertise.

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In conjunction with its 29th Convocation, Universiti Brunei Darussalam hosted The Future Forum 2017 which was officiated by the Minister of Education Pehin Orang Kaya Indera Pahlawan Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Suyoi Haji Osman.

In his opening address, he noted that changes to higher education over the next 15 to 20 years will be incremental as well as transformative, and that continuing technology disruption, increasing emphasis on individualised univeristy experience, and greater hybridisation of academic and industry goals may be defining hallmarks of change.

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PAPRSB Institute of Health Sciences held a simulation exercise in conjunction with Healthcare Simulation Week where students' knowledge and skills were put to the test in a controlled simulated environment.

Healthcare Simulation Week is an annual event celebrated globally by simulation users from 11th to 15th September. Aimed at increasing awareness among healthcare practitioners in using simulation to improve patient safety through effective and efficient patient care and healthcare delivery, the emphasis of the activity is on pre-hospital and in-hospital patient assessment, management, safety and team dynamics. Simulation-based education is a powerful tool for reinforcing clinical knowledge, improving team communication and teaching essential decision-making skills. It provides ample opportunities for hands-on skills practice without putting patients at risk.

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Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) hosted the Nobel Laureate Lecture by Professor Robert C Merton on 5th September 2017 at the Lecture Hall in Chancellor Hall, UBD.

The lecture titled "Finance Science, Financial Innovation and Long-Term Asset Management" touched on the domain of investment management, the production process for specified investment goals and transforming the shape of payoffs to fit those goals; goals-based long-term investing which included the life cycles of retirement investing, investing for governments and integrated endowment management; defining financial science with a focus on risk-free assets as well as the benefits of financial innovation.

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Universiti Brunei Darussalam's School of Business and Economics (UBD SBE) officiated its first International Conference on Business, Economics and Finance (ICBEF) at the Senate Room, Chancellor Hall, UBD.

The two-day conference features 60 papers presented by speakers from 14 countries conducted in parallel sessions covering areas such as Islamic Finance, Marketing, Labour Economics, Accounting, Managing Strategies, Asset Management and Economics, Corporate Finance and Governance, Human Resource Management, International Economics, Business Strategies and Entrepreneurship, Financial Institutions and Market, Information Management as well as Economics Policy and Development. The conference brings together presenters from UBD, practitioners in government organisations, research institutions and local businesses as well as academia from international universities, sharing invaluable knowledge and experience while providing insight into key sustainable practices for organisations.

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UBD held its 29th Convocation to celebrate the graduating students of 2017 at UBD's Chancellor's Hall on 7th September 2017. The ceremony was graced by His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu'izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar 'Ali Saifuddien Sa'adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Negara Brunei Darussalam, Chancellor of Universiti Brunei Darussalam.

This year saw 1,308 graduates from the fifth batch of UBD's distinctive GenNEXT programme, with 36 PhD graduates, surpassing last year's record of 28. The total number of graduating students also comprises 346 Master holders, 827 Bachelor graduates as well as 1 Advanced Diploma and 98 Diploma recipients. The 29th Convocation also saw the graduation of 66 international students in UBD.

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