Global University System (GUS)
To be submitted to
Global Development Alliance Secretariat, Rm. 6.08.026
United States Agency for International Development (USAID)
1300 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20523
January 27, 2003
Takeshi Utsumi, Ph.D.
GLObal Systems Analysis and Simulation
Association in the U.S.A. (GLOSAS/USA)
Founder and V.P. for Technology and Coordination of Global University System (GUS)
43-23 Colden Street, #9-L
Flushing, NY 11355-3998
Fax: 718-939-0656 (prefer email)
Tax Exempt ID: 11-2999676
Amazon Project of Global University System (GUS)
The Global University System (GUS) is a world-wide initiative to create a telecommunications infrastructure for access to educational resources across national and cultural boundaries for global peace. The GUS helps higher educational institutions in remote/rural areas of developing countries to deploy broadband Internet in order for them to close the digital divide and act as the knowledge center of their community for the eradication of poverty and isolation see ANNEXES I and II. This is to achieve ³education and healthcare for all,² anywhere, anytime and at any pace.
The GUS has task forces working in the major regions of the globe with partnerships of higher education and healthcare institutions. The GUS affiliated institutions will become members of our GUS/UNESCO/UNITWIN Networking Chair Program. Learners may take courses from member universities and get their degree from the GUS, thus freeing them from being confined to one academic culture of a single university and country. These learners, their professors and researchers in developing countries will partner with colleagues in advanced countries to form a global forum for exchange of ideas and information and for conducting collaborative research and development.
GUS is not limiting its efforts to university-level education. The K-12 education in many underdeveloped nations is poor to non-existent, and they produce few students who are qualified to master a university education. The seeds of poverty and terrorism are sown in children through ignorance and indoctrination. What could be a more important problem to address? Leadership must come from the universities including, hopefully, GUS.
Currently institutions that are participating in GUS development projects include the Univ. of Tampere, U.K. Open Univ., 6 federal universities of Amazonia, Havana Institute of Technology, Univ. of Malawi in Africa, McGill University in Canada, Univ. of Tennessee in Knoxville, Cornell Univ., Yale Univ., Harvard Univ., John Hopkins Univ., Univ. of Michigan, Montana State Univ., Houston Community College, Univ. of Hawaii, Maui Community College, Univ. of Milan, Catalunyan Open Univ., Concordia International Univ. in Estonia, NEXT (Generation) Project with European universities and global commercial organizations at Cancer Research U.K., and others. GUS will serve as an educational broker for universities, thus helping them gain international influence and access to students that they would otherwise not reach.
The GUS program is a comprehensive and holistic approach to building smart communities in developing countries for e-learning and e-healthcare/telemedicine. Initiatives are underway to create necessary infrastructure and educational liaisons, and some near-term educational access is expected. Clearly, GUS is an ambitious program, one that cannot be achieved by any one group, university, or national government. The program will need substantial collaborative contribution of ideas, expertise, technology resources, and money from multiple sources.
· Community Development Networks (CDNs) which will connect the universities with secondary and elementary schools, libraries, hospitals, local government offices and NGOs, etc., in the cities of the main campuses of the CampusNet affiliated universities by broadband wireless Internet.
Over the past three decades, GLOSAS/USA has played with its own private fund a major pioneering role in extending U.S. data communication networks to other countries, particularly to Japan, and deregulating Japanese telecommunication policies for the use of e-mail through ARPANET, Telenet and Internet (thanks to help from the Late Commerce Secretary Malcolm Baldridge) -- which is now called ³closing the digital divide.² This triggered the de-monopolization and privatization of Japanese telecommunications industries. This liberalization of the telecommunication industry has been emulated and has now created a more enabling environment for economic and social development in many other countries. Over 180 countries have Internet access and more than 550 million people use e-mail around the world nowadays. American and other countries' university courses now reach many under-served developing countries.
We helped the Japanese government pledge total US$17 billion ($15 billion at the 2000 Okinawa Summit and $2 billion at the 2002 Canada/G8 Summit) to close the digital divide in developing countries, particularly in education and healthcare fields for the eradication of poverty and isolation.
Our projects will combine (1) the Japanese government's ODA funds and (2) Japanese electronic equipment (computers, tranceivers, dish antennas, etc.) with (a) the Internet technology and (b) content development of North America.
We initiated our GUS Project during the workshop "Emerging Global Electronic Distance Learning (EGEDL¹99)" held at the Univ. of Tampere, Finland in August, 1999, with funds from the World Bank/InfoDev ($100,000), National Science Foundation ($50,000), the Ministry of Education Finland, Soros Foundation and many others <http://www.uta.fi/EGEDL>.
Our Brazilian colleague and GLOSAS/USA contributed about $80,000 respectively, for the conduct of two highly successful workshops with videoconferences (which spanned from Tokyo to Ukraine) and telemedicine demonstrations (which connected with the Univ. of Michigan with cardiograph for diagnosis of a real patient) in 1998 and 2000. These events arose interests in e-learning among secondary school teachers and formed the coalition of CampusNet affiliated universities see APPENDIX III of ANNEX IV.
Brazilian government has already pledged US$2.8 million for the total estimated cost of US$10 million of the MRCs. Brazilian Air Force¹s SIPAM (formerly SIVAM) Program has already started implementing a part of the CampusNet in remote/rural areas of the Amazon. The university hospital in Manaus is also heavily involved in this project.
We submitted our grant application (US$140,000) to Tinker Foundation to organize a workshop in Manaus see ANNEX IV.
We have also started seeking a matching fund (US$80,000) from Tinker Foundation to distribute wireless laptop to those schools in poverty stricken areas.
The number and types of beneficiaries that will benefit from this GUS project will be numerous.
During the Manaus workshop, possible joint projects with Brazilians, Americans and Canadians will also be discussed and planned on how to utilize the expected broadband Internet. They are contents development, teacher and general-public training for digital literacy, English as a Second Language (ESL), nurse training, etc., -- see APPENDIX VIII of ANNEX IV.
· To conduct their global e-learning and e-healthcare with the appropriate members of the CampusNet affiliated universities through their existing telecom infrastructures.
· To encourage each of the teams applying further FIPSE funding for their own continuing activities, if necessary.
The Univ. of South Pacific in Fiji connected nearby islands with narrow-band Internet satellite with US$13 million (additional $3 million later) from the Japanese, $1 million each from the New Zealand and Australian governments, respectively.
As emulating their model, we plan to deploy the CampusNet and the CDNs (which total estimated amount could be in the range of US$15 to 20 million) with the Japanese government¹s funds; e.g., Japan Trust Fund for Consultancy Services (JCF) of the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) and/or ³Non-tied cultural aid grant² out of the ODA fund of the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA).
The fund asking from the USAID/GDA (for the activities at the Univ. of Amazona, GUS at the Univ. of Tampere, and GLOSAS/USA) is for conducting Manaus workshop and subsequent preparatory work (one year), and for the coordination and liaison after submitting the comprehensive document to the Japanese ODA fund (two years).