In Global Peace Through The Global University System
2003 Ed. by T. Varis, T. Utsumi, and W. R. Klemm
University of Tampere, Hämeenlinna, Finland
The idea of this book was born when the UNESCO Chair in Global e-Learning was created in the University of Tampere, Finland. The purpose has been to make internationally known the philosophy, past and present action, as well as future plans of the Global University System (GUS), which was the outcome of years of development and epoch-making working conference at the University of Tampere in 1999. In that conference the issues of information infrastructure, content, and a proposed Global University System were examined in depth. The Global University System (GUS) will establish pilot projects that can be disseminated as "best practices" examples for the further development and deployment of effective international distance learning partnerships. In addition, GUS was seen to foster the development of distance learning and telemedicine pilot projects using broadband Internet technology in order to enhance their teaching/learning capabilities. It was believed also to facilitate connectivity among current distance learning efforts around the world and provide support and guidance to selected pilot projects intended to serve as models for adoption around the world.
The Tampere 1999 conference chairman, Dr. Tapio Varis of the University of Tampere, was asked to lead the effort to seek funding and carry out the projects as Acting President of a newly formed Global University System. Dr. Marco Antonio Dias, former director of Higher Education of UNESCO, also kindly agreed to serve as the Vice President for Administration of the GUS. Dr. Takeshi Utsumi is the founder, President Emeritus, and Vice President for Technology and Coordination. We have honor and privilege of having as the trustee members: Dr. Pekka Tarjanne, (former Director-General of the ITU) and Dr. Federico Mayor, (President of the Foundation for Culture of Peace and a former Director-General of the UNESCO). The special advisors are: David A. Johnson, Ph.D., (Professor Emeritus, University of Tennessee) and Fredric Michael Litto, Ph.D., (President of the Brazilian Association of Distance Education at the University of Sao Paulo).
Professor Tapio Varis was later appointed as the first UNESCO Chair in the University of Tampere responsible for these activities. This book is the first major contribution of the Chair to these efforts.
Greetings by high-level dignitaries and representatives of international organizations in Part I of the book endorse the idea of GUS. Authors of these greetings give their visions of how the university can advance the cause of world prosperity, justice, and peace.
Papers in Part II describe how the challenges of globalization in the 21st century are to be dealt with along intercultural studies and peace education with the use of advanced information and communication technologies.
Papers in Part III describe:
Papers in Part IV will describe how to achieve global collaboration along with our GUS for attaining global peace.
According to the Agreement between the University of Tampere and UNESCO, "The University shall submit an annual report to UNESCO presenting the activities carried out by the Chair. If approved by UNESCO, this report may be distributed to the world academic community. UNESCO shall contribute to the international dissemination of information on the experience and potential benefits of the activities of the Chair at the regional and international levels. The University shall provide a financial report showing the financial support obtained for the Chair from different sources."
The editors hope that this important publication will be widely distributed in this spirit and that it will help learners everywhere to obtain resources to participate in the Global University System and overcome global digital divide. We are convinced that "if global peace is ever to be achieved, global-scale education with the use of the modern digital telecommunications will be needed to create mutual understanding among nations, cultures, ethnic groups, and religions."
Tapio Varis, editor-in-chief
Takeshi Utsumi, co-editor
William Klemm, co-editor
The CD accompanying with this book enables readers to access hyperlinked Web sites.