Diversity, we’ve got to do much more!

epDr Edwina Pio, New Zealand’s first and only professor of diversity and director of diversity at AUT, says while it’s wonderful to celebrate diversity through festivals, “we’ve got to do much more”.

It’s important that education institutions, as well as organisations, when they talk of diversity it’s more than butter chicken, more than Diwali, more than moon cakes and more than Chinese New Year.

Large countries such as India or China, where a lot of migrants come from, are “so heterogenous” she says, “you can’t use one broad template for everyone”.

Migration is a reality, Pio says. “When we think of the future of New Zealand, it is going to get browner, it is going to get older.” That’s why it’s important Aucklanders are comfortable living alongside people from diverse backgrounds.


Diversity, Peace and the Future of Leadership in the United States

picThe world today, more than ever, is in need of leaders who could work towards weaving and achieving a shared vision of diversity and peace, a vision that could in turn enable an inclusive notion of prosperity. History has shown that an enduring peace is possible only through reconciliation, equality and justice, not through divisiveness, ethnocentrism and injustice.

In this backdrop, there is immense responsibility on the shoulders of global leaders, particularly of countries rich in resources or population, to step up to the plate and acknowledge that together we have failed to address
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Creating Inclusive Organizational and Public Spaces

The Centre for Governance and Public Management (CGPM) housed at the Suleman Dawood School of Business (SDSB), Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) organised an International Conference on ‘Creating Inclusive Organizational and Public Spaces’ on March 30-31, 2018.

Renowned academics, development practitioners, post-graduate and undergraduate research students and professionals from numerous business and civil society organisations attended and participated in the Conference.

The two-day event commenced with an inauguration ceremony where Professor Dr. S. Sohail H. Naqvi, Vice Chancellor, LUMS, Dr. Jawad Syed, Dean SDSB and Dr. M. Azfar Nisar, Director CGPM welcomed the audience with their inspirational and refreshing remarks.

The inauguration was followed by the first keynote speaker session of the conference, where Dr. Beverly Dawn Metcalfe, Associate Professor in International Management and Development, Suliman S. Olayan School of Business, American University of Beirut, Lebanon delivered an invigorating keynote speech on Islamic Feminism.

The Conference sessions evolved around a
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Role of education in countering extremism and intolerance

mashal_khanDr. Jawad Syed recently spoke with the newspaper, Pakistan Today, about “Role of Education in Countering Extremism and Intolerance”. He spoke about the importance of tolerance in educational institutes and sharing of knowledge, belief and ideas without conflict. On April 13, 2017, Mashal Khan, 23, a student at the Abdul Wali Khan University, Mardan was lynched by a mob, allegedly comprising of his fellow students riled up by allegations of blasphemy against the young man.

The extract of the interview is given below, while the entire script is given here: ‘Justice for Mashal Khan is good, preventing such monstrosities from happening is better’

“A few very important things should promptly be added to the co/extracurricular activities,” said Jawad Syed, Dean of the Suleman Dawood School of Business at LUMS. “The concept of pluralism that two or
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Professor Edwina Pio appointed as a trustee of the religious diversity centre

IMG_3424Professor Edwina Pio (centre) with Adrian Rurawhe – assistant speaker Labour, Dame Susan Devoy – race relations commissioner, Dr Maureen Siehr (Director Interfaith Scotland), Jocelyn Armstrong – Chair Religious Diversity Centre, Labour MP Anahila Kanongata’a-Suisuiki, and trustees of the Religious Diversity Centre.

Professor Edwina Pio, who works and researches in the area of religious diversity at work, has been appointed as a trustee of the religious diversity centre. This is a national centre of educational and research excellence, fostering an appreciation for and understanding of religious diversity amongst all New Zealanders, under the leadership of the chair Jocelyn Armstrong. Rt Hon Helen Clark, is the patron and she notes: “the world badly needs voices of reason and tolerance and those who will work to build dialogue and respect across faiths and beliefs. I do believe New Zealand can show the way.”

New Zealand is one of the most religiously diverse nations in our fragile planet earth, despite the growing number of individuals who tick no religion for the census. While predominantly Christian, New Zealand now has significant communities of Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, Baha’i and Jews whose work and religious lives interweave. The expression of religion at work and sacred spaces in often ‘secular’ workplaces is often challenging for employers and employees. New Zealand is more religiously diverse than countries such as Australia, Belgium, Canada, Germany, Indonesia and Spain. There is also intra religious diversity such as Christians from India, the Middle East, Korea, China and the Pacific Islands. Professor Pio emphasises the need for inner disarmament so that policies and practices for religious diversity are carefully calibrated with grace and gratitude.