JOHOR BAHRU, May 7, 2012: – Universities are facing unprecedented challenges as the wave of globalisation impacts higher education systems around the world.
The way forward for the universities, based on discussions and conversations among more than 60 local and international participants of the UTM University Presidents Forum 2012, are collaborative innovation, ethical entrepreneurship, and a sense of caution and prudential management on the impacts of globalisation on higher education systems.
The movement of people, goods and technologies led to an introduction of new ideas, customs and values but have also bring to attention the importance of understanding the dynamics of local context, governance and culture.
As such, universities cannot work in situ and in silo anymore as greater interaction between different stakeholders in the ecosystem would enable the mobilization of existing resources to solve critical global issues such as climate change, water security, renewable energy, agriculture and others.
UTM hosted the fourth edition of the University Presidents Forum on May 6, in conjunction with the 48th Convocation Ceremony of the university on May 7 and 8.
Keynote speakers of the forum include Professor Dewi Fortuna Anwar, Deputy Secretary of the Vice President of the Republic of Indonesia for Political Affairs and the Chairman of the Institute for Democracy and Human Rights, The Habibie Centre; Anthony J. Sinskey, Professor of Microbiology and Health Sciences and Technology from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Sara Farley, Chief Operating Officer of Global Knowledge Initiative (GKI).
Participants of the forum deliberated on issues affecting respective higher education institutions within the theme of the forum, “Innovative. Entrepreneurial. Global.”
The forum is also a showcase of the university’s commitment in forging greater partnerships with its foreign counterparts.
The Vice Chancellor, Prof. Ir. Dr. Zaini Ujang concurred that the university will focus on multilateral partnership framework with organisations.
This transformation, according to Prof. Zaini, will be facilitated by the GKI, a non-governmantal organisation linking governments, higher education systems and the scientific community around the world to address shared challenges in science, technology and innovation (STI).
He hoped the forum marks the start of greater interactions between UTM and its partners, in particular participating institutions of the forum.