Monday, July 30, 2018

UN University Rector Visiting Canberra

Greetings from the Australian National University in Canberra, where Dr David Malone, Rector of the United Nations University is speaking on "Is the UN fit for purpose?".

Dr Malone characterized many international organizations as "aging", including NATO and regional organizations, not just the UN. He suggested that the UN member states tended to "micromanage" what the Secretary General  was trying to do. Also he suggested the UN was failing with communication to a young public. Dr Malone suggested that the UN was out communicated by the heads of the three major military powers of the world (which I assume are the USA, Russia and China).

Dr Malone singled out Nikki Haley, US diplomat to the UN for praise. He commented that Russia and China had high quality UN delegations, should they chose to make use of them.

ps: I didn't know the UN had a university, based in  Tokyo since 1973 (offering degrees and short courses). Some courses use the Australian developed Moodle LMS. So I asked Dr Malone if UNU ws planing to offer on-line programs for students who can't get to a campus. UNU has a sustainability Masters and it happens I designed an IT Sustainability course. Dr Malone replied that each par of UNU has the autonomy to run courses as they wish and some would be interested in e-learning. However, he pointed out the problems with supporting remote students and designing interactive courses (not just "talking at" students).

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