Public Talk by Professor Nirmala Rao

BANGI, November 14, 2019 – Institute for Environment and Development (LESTARI) has organized a Public talk by Professor Nirmala Rao, Vice-Chancellor of Asian University for Women (AUW), Bangladesh.  Professor Nirmala has emphasized on substantial training for Asian women to create the next generation leader during her public talk today. She has extensive experience of public service and served as an advisor to a range of bodies including the UK Audit Commission and the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (ODPM). Nirmala was elected Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in 2003 and awarded an OBE for services to scholarship in 2011. She was recently elected Honorary Fellow of Lucy Cavendish College, University of Cambridge, UK. In her speech, Prof. Nirmala said “Identifying talent in places where women’s potential is ignored, providing a platform for women of uncommon ability and leadership potential to acquire a world-class education and creating and sustaining international networks of women leaders and their supporters” is the goal of AUW”. After the public talk, Professor Nirmala has made a courtesy visit to the Vice-Chancellor’s office of UKM and conducted discussion over lunch. In this VIP lunch session, Vice-Chancellor UKM, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Research and Innovation (UKM), Director of LESTARI, UKM, Director of IKMAS, Director of Tun Fatimah Hashim’s Women’s Leadership Centre, Fellow of LESTARI, Deputy Director General of Department of Environment, Malaysia, Chairperson of Centre for Cancer Research of Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman, Past President and Chairman of Programs and Publicity, International Women’s Association Kuala Lumpur were present and exchanged their views and knowledge on empowering the Asian women. At the same time, the higher management team discussed about the possible collaboration in terms of research, publication, student exchange program, training, faculty mobility and international research funding.

Prof. Nirmala showed her sincere gratitude to the organizing committee regarding her visit to UKM.  She said, I have had the tremendous pleasure of meeting with exceptional people from across departments, Institutes and the senior management.  I have marvelled at much of what I have learned: there are an outstanding research culture and a good deal of commitment to nurturing relevant and meaningful international partnerships.  Every member of the academic community I spoke with took pride in the University’s strong position in the global rankings, while remaining resolute in their purpose – to sustain UKM’s role as a regional champion, a national asset, and a global leader.  It was, for me, quite a remarkable experience”.

Report by Dr. Lubna Alam.