Pacific Islands University Research Network (PIURN)
Second Conference: 19-21 September, 2016.
National University of Samoa (NUS), Apia.
In accordance with the decision from the inaugural conference, the second PIURN conference will be hosted by the National University of Samoa (NUS) in Apia – from the 19-21 of September, 2016.
The conference will comprise three colloquiums on the following themes:
1. The evolving principles and practices in customary land tenure systems in the Pacific in the context of development pressures and climate change.
2. Pacific Regional Cooperation in the 21st century.
3. Pacific Indigenous Art form and Languages in the 21st century – the challenges of sustainability.
These are some of the current issues which continue to dominate the development debates among the governments and citizens of the Pacific region. They also impact on how development partners in the Pacific decide to prioritise the various forms of assistance they are offering the Pacific countries.
Aims and participants:
I. To bring together scholars from the Pacific region to collectively address the changes in the Pacific region in the context of the three themes.
II. To enable graduate students to develop knowledge and connections with other scholars and to share research data and methodologies on these three themes.
III. All sessions will be held in plenary, not as parallel separate sessions.
It has been agreed that the conference will invite presentations from the academic staff of member institutions. In addition to their presentations, PIURN will also encourage participation from post graduate research students from the member institutions to discuss their research topics, methodologies, and to network – to promote future academic collaborations especially in the area of research.
Background to PIURN:
The Pacific Islands Universities Research Network (PIURN) was founded and launched in July 2013 after eleven universities in the Pacific region agreed to set up a regional network to facilitate and encourage academic research in the region. The eleven founding universities (three from Fiji, five from Papua New Guinea (PNG), two from the French territories – University of New Caledonia UNC) and University of French Polynesia (UPF), and the National University of Samoa (NUS).
These institutions agreed to work together to “…strengthen their strategic scholarly collaboration and institutional cooperation to better contribute to the development of the region, promote the well-being of local peoples and create a real regional platform to support public policies beyond language differences, through research, education and exchange”
The PIURN executive is currently considering applications from other universities situated outside the Pacific to be associate members of the network.
PIURN held its inaugural conference from the 3rd – 7th of November 2014, hosted by the University of New Caledonia in Noumea with funding assistance from the French Pacific Fund. The first part of the conference was to finalise and formally adopt the network’s structures and procedures. The second and main part was the presentation of papers by participants. The presentations were organised into seven broad themes:
I. Research and the questions of ownership; belonging and relationships;
II. Disruptions and Continuities in the 19th and 20th centuries in the Pacific;
III. New Territories and Reconstruction of Identity – colonisation and decolonisation;
IV. Land, State, Law and Customs – contemporary stakes;
V. Land, Economic Development and Regional Development Policies;
VI. Land and Agricultural Development – assessing food security;
VII. Mines and Governance.
These broad themes were organised partly to guide the presentations, but also to raise further questions which would guide future research activities by post graduate students and staff of the network members. The three themes for the 2016 conference were chosen with these in mind.
The host institution (NUS) now invites presentations for the conference. Intending participants are asked to let the organisers know of your intention to participate. We also request that intending participants send titles of their presentations with brief abstracts of not more than a hundred words.
The deadline for abstracts will be the end of April. These should be accompanied by full names of presenters, their institutional affiliations and contact addresses (emails, etc). Presenters are encouraged to send in completed papers by the end of July to help us with organising the programme and to discuss publication options.
Unfortunately we were unsuccessful with our application for funding from the French Pacific Fund. We are still exploring further options of assistance but nothing definite at this point. Participants are therefore expected to pay for their participation (travel, accommodation, registration). If we are successful in securing some funds, these will be prioritised to ensure participation from post-graduate students.
Registration Fees will help cover expenses for the use of IT, stationery, lunch and morning and afternoon tea, some local transport.
Staff members US$130.00 (Early bird registration US$100)
The organisers are discussing prices with some of the local hotels/motels and will send out further information once we have finalised these. We will send this information to people who have expressed interests in attending.
Please contact the organisers below for more information.
For now, please contact the following for further information:
Safua Akeli firstname.lastname@example.org
Malama Meleisea email@example.com
Lorena Alesana firstname.lastname@example.org