Peace Boat’s East Asia Voyage 2019 set sail on August 4. One of the special projects to take place during this voyage is Peace Boat’s Global University, a short-term intensive educational programme conducted in English and offering a unique curriculum combining "exposure" programmes (field visits) in ports and workshops and seminars onboard. Thirty-five students and young professionals from eight countries and regions are taking part in the programme this August. With the overall theme of “Building Peaceful and Inclusive Societies Together in Asia,” participants will spend three weeks together to learn and discuss issues related to peace and conflict, as well as human rights and sustainability in the region. The ports of call include Hiroshima, Kagoshima, Nagasaki, Busan, Kanazawa, Vladivostok, Otaru, Kushiro, Muroran and Ishinomaki.
Participants arrived in Osaka for a pre-departure orientation yesterday. After a series of icebreaking activities, they together came up with a set of key values we will be upheld throughout the programme. Throughout the Global University, participants will often be discussing difficult issues for which opinions and interpretations can easily differ. These key values will help us ensure a safe space for everybody to feel comfortable sharing their opinions.
Underpinning the programme is Goal 16 of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which urges world governments to "promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels." In different cities, participants will listen to the accounts of those who have suffered from conflicts or other forms of violence. What does it mean to live under the threat of violence? How do people deal with trauma, fear, and social divisions that wars and conflicts leave behind? What is justice that is inclusive and accessible? Participants will also meet with people who provide solutions to these difficult questions and participate in lectures and workshops by navigators including Akibayashi Kozue (Doshisha University), Alexis Dudden (University of Connecticut), and Anselmo Lee (Kyunghee University). The diversity of participants is also an asset. Throughout the programme, participants will learn from one another and discuss what it means to build peace for the people, with the people.
Please see here for full information about the curriculum and previous Global University reports. Programme updates will be posted regularly, so please stay tuned!