Volume 5, Number 1, Sept 2004
Conference Held by IAUP/UN
Commission on Disarmament
Education, Conflict Resolution
The IAUP/UN Commission on Disarmament Education, Conflict Resolution and Peace held a conference from March 11-13, 2004 in Manila, Philippines, entitled "Mosaic for Peace: Bringing together university, media, political and business leaders for the goal of world peace."
The conference, co-sponsored by the IAUP/UN Commission on Disarmament Education, Conflict Resolution and Peace and De La Salle University, Philippines was made possible by a grant from UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization), with matching support from Holy Family University. IAUP leaders, faculty members, graduate students and those from other interested universities, as well as concerned individuals in business and media attended the conference. Others interested in promoting peace through higher education were also present, including UNESCO representatives Helen Sophia Balderama, Development Management Officer, Professor Rasman, member of the Committee on Education, and Mr. Jose C. Sison, of the Committee on Social and Human Sciences.
Keynote speakers included Dr. Thomas Daffern, Director, International Institute for Peace & Global Philosophy, United Kingdom, who presented, "Remaking the Mosaic with the help of the Muses: From a world broken into pieces to a world of universal peace." Dr. Daffern focused on the divided reality facing the world today, stating the nine major points of brokenness, and stressed the role of education in the healing process. Dr. Kate Dewes, Vice President, International Peace Bureau, New Zealand, presented, "Weaving Webs of Peace." Dr. Dewes discussed the effort of bringing ordinary citizens, educators, media, business personnel, and political activists together to help achieve the goal of a nuclear-free and peaceful world. Dr. Dewes stressed the crucial importance and responsibility of all citizens to enlighten governments, universities, business, and media communities to the ongoing efforts of peace. Ms. Trudy Rubin, Foreign Affairs Columnist, The Philadelphia Inquirer, discussed "Can the media help bring about world peace?" Ms. Rubin emphasized the role of journalists and highlighted the differences between print and broadcast media, stating how these two forms of news greatly affect the public's method of acquiring, interpreting and understanding local and national information. Dr. Ester Albano Garcia, former chair, Commission on Higher Education, Philippines, presented, "Peace Initiatives in Higher Education." Dr. Garcia focused on the various initiatives of peace and peace education in higher education institutions in the Philippines. Numerous papers were presented as well.
A major goal stemming from the "Mosaic for Peace" conference was the opportunity to network on a global level among university representatives interested in the promotion of peace through higher education and in developing partnerships among business, media, and university leaders in the promotion of peace. All conference proceedings will be available in CD-ROM format.
The IAUP/UN Commission on Disarmament Education, Conflict Resolution and Peace was established by the International Association of University Presidents (IAUP) at its Triennial meeting in 1990 in Valledolid, Spain. The Association, formed in Oxford, England in 1964, established as its motto "Welfare and Security for Human Kind through Education". IAUP is a non-governmental organization (NGO) and has supported the establishment of the University for Peace in Costa Rica as well as the International Year of Peace and Day of Peace initiated by the United Nations.
The IAUP/UN Commission, currently chaired by Sister Francesca Onley from Holy Family University in Philadelphia, was established to actualize the goals of the achievement of peace as espoused by the Association. The Commission has a direct relationship with the UN Office of Disarmament Affairs; the Director of the UN Office of Disarmament Affairs is a member of the Commission and staff from that office assist the Commission with its meetings. Commission members in-clude university presidents, rectors, vice-chancellors, economists, teachers, leaders of other peace and security organizations and university professors.
The Commission has been involved in a range of educational programs. For instance, the Commission developed working relationships with universities in Latin America, Central America, Asia, Africa, India and the Middle East to foster the development of course work, instruction and research on disarmament, conflict resolution and peace. The Commission assists institutions of higher education to institutionalize course work, instruction and research on disarmament, conflict resolution and peace as part of their regular academic offerings. Library materials have been collected and sent to several universities in Latin America, Africa, the Philippines and Israel. Course work has been translated into Arabic and distributed to several universities in the Middle East. With the support and assistance of the Commission, significant degree programmes have been established at Bicol University (the Philippines) at bachelor and graduate levels including a doctoral programme in Peace and Security. Each year, doctoral students present their dissertations to the Commission at a meeting in the United Nations in New York.
For additional information, please contact the Commission at: Peace@holyfamily.edu.