President Satomi was in Australia to attend the 21st Annual Presidents' Meeting of the Association of Pacific Rim Universities (APRU), which was held at the University of New South Wales from June 25 - 27.
As APRU comprises the region's leading education and research institutions, the annual presidents' meeting is an important event. This year, 20 university presidents were among the 80 participants in attendance.
President Satomi has served as a member of APRU's steering committee for the past two years and has been centrally involved in important decisions regarding APRU's future. President Satomi took part in the steering committee meeting on the first day of the event. As his term expired in June, this was President Satomi's final meeting with his counterparts.
On the second day, former New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark delivered a lecture on the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Ms. Clark had served as Administrator of the UN Development Programme until April this year.
In her speech, she cited Tohoku University's Global Center for Disaster Statistics as an excellent example of how universities can contribute to the realization of SDGs. She praised the center for working closely with UN agencies and others, to support the disaster mitigation efforts of developing countries.
At the presidential retreat held that afternoon, President Satomi co-chaired a session on "Collaboration in Teaching and Learning among APRU members" alongside the president of Hong Kong University of Science and Technology.
The next APRU Annual Presidents' Meeting will be held at National Taiwan University from June 24 - 26, 2018.
- APRU: Association of Pacific Rim Universities
- APRU was founded in 1997 to create an association of premier research universities around the Pacific Rim region to foster cooperation in education and research in areas including but not limited to economic development, science and technology, human resource development, education and environmental protection. Currently there are 43 member universities from 16 countries. Tohoku University joined in 2008 and President Satomi served as a Steering Committee member for two years, beginning in 2015.
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