The Pacific Ocean, the largest ocean on earth, connects dozens of economies, as a vast space of intercontinental and transnational trade and transport. At the same time, the seas and lands of the Pacific represent an unparalleled resource of natural and cultural diversity, cherished and exploited by different political powers throughout history. At present, the region’s biodiversity is at risk through urbanization, deforestation, and the overuse of natural resources.
Since the 1990s, the Asia-Pacific region has been exposed to the single most significant accumulation of natural disasters. Among the consequences of climate-related hazards including droughts, extreme temperatures, seasonal floods and storms are displacements – with over 150 million people, the Asia-Pacific region recorded the highest number of new displacements between 2008 and 2019. Other factors such as food insecurity, high water stress, poverty, inequality, and unplanned and rapid urbanization add to the vulnerability of populations across the Asia-Pacific.
The theme of this meeting, One Pacific, gives expression to the fact that the multiple challenges facing the Asia-Pacific are all interrelated, as are the fates of its civilizations, and the opportunities that the Pacific holds for the future. The meeting will explore the range of issues facing the Asia-Pacific and what role higher education and university collaboration can play in resolving them.
This meeting is an opportunity for senior international leaders to help develop the APRU vision of One Pacific and explore the network’s role in the Future of Higher Education in our region. We will learn about the actions and impact of our working groups and focus on how our universities can guide and support their future priorities.
The whole meeting is designed for dialogue and participants will have time for informal networking.