The University of the South Pacific’s (USP) Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Rajesh Chandra delivered a public lecture on ‘Pacific Regionalism and Higher Education’ at the Development Policy Centre, Australian National University (ANU) in Canberra on 8 March 2016.
The lecture was organised by the Development Policy Centre at Crawford School of Public Policy in partnership with the ANU Pacific Institute and The State, Society and Governance in Melanesia Programme, ANU College of Asia & the Pacific.
Professor Stephen Howes the Director, Development Policy Centre, ANU College of Asia and the Pacific, warmly welcomed guests to this event and said it was an honour to host the Vice-Chancellor of USP for this presentation.
In her opening remarks, Professor Veronica Taylor, Dean of ANU College of Asia and the Pacific stated that USP is strategically placed to serve the growing development needs of the Pacific region.
Part of the audience at the ‘Pacific Regionalism and Higher Education’
She also emphasised the importance of the USP-ANU collaboration. “USP has a multi-faceted role in the Pacific region. Besides its core function as a provider of higher tertiary education and research in the region, it also plays a significant role as a regional organisation.”
Dr Miranda Forsyth the Associate Professor of the School of Regulation and Global Governance at the ANU College of Asia & the Pacific, who is also a former staff of USP, stated that the collaboration between USP and the Pacific Institute at ANU can leverage research-based sustainable solutions for issues facing the region.
In his presentation, Professor Chandra explained how the University sees its role in the Framework for Pacific Regionalism, its engagement with CROP agencies apart from being a tertiary education provider, which ultimately contributes towards Pacific education, research and regional integration.
Professor Rajesh Chandra stated that “USP leads the Regional ICT Initiative and in this regard, works closely with the Pacific Island Forum Secretariat (PIFS) and other stakeholders including the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the World Bank (WB),” he said.
Professor Chandra also explained how the Regional ICT Initiative will be taken forward under the strengthened CROP ICT Working Group, instead of what was initially proposed through the Regional ICT Advisory Committee (RIAC).
USP Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Rajesh Chandra (centre) with
He added that there is a greater need for collaboration with national universities in the Pacific region and universities in Australia and New Zealand.
The public lecture generated good interest and engagement from the attendees, which comprised ANU academics, researchers, students and other members of the public.