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Knowledge & Connection for Sustainable Development

Keynote Address at the 5th Teso Development International Conference

De Vere Selsdon Estate Hotel, London, United Kingdom

By Dr. Young Gil Lee, Vice Chancellor, Kumi University, Uganda

KNOWLEDGE is a strategic force for sustainable development. If we focus primarily on traditional way of doing economy, there will be no leap-frogging toward new society in Teso and Karamoja. We need to infuse knowledge factor into society, so that development could take place based on knowledge. For sustainable development, knowledge dimension is critically important in every aspect of life and culture. Knowledge economy means the economy, in which knowledge plays crucial role. We should start from literacy campaign, through school enrollment, quality of education, development of science & technology and conversion of all these into business and industry. Language, skill, science and technology are key words in knowledge economy. Knowledge is critical in value addition, without which there will be no entrepreneurial development. Demanding need in such knowledge economy is to KNOW IT and to MAKE IT KNOWN.

To have knowledge spreading quickly and effectively, we should have capacity of connection. Knowledge and connection are twin brothers for development, for knowledge cannot be obtained without connection, which facilitates knowledge transfer, creation and dissemination. For the connection, the most foundational concept is PLATFORM. The platform is to connect knowledge source to knowledge need, creating unimaginable dynamics of interactions. The Teso Development International Conference is an excellent model of such platform, where knowledge interaction takes place. This platform shall lead us all to next level of skills, appropriate technologies, science and advanced technologies, and development of industries and businesses for the long run.

To make development in Teso & Karamoja knowledge-based and connectivity-driven, we need to develop sense of PUBLIC DIPLOMACY. Development interactions should not be bound into locality but be expanded to the nation and global communities. Teso Parliamentary Group is connecting Teso & Karamoja on national level, while IWA-UK on international one. Public diplomacy is to invite national and global stakeholders on to local focus of Teso & Karamoja. We need various partners in different geographical locations and spheres. The more diplomatic connections we have, the better we can perform for sustainable development.

UNIVERSITY is potentially an excellent platform for knowledge and connection for sustainable development, for she is basically knowledge institution of teaching and learning, while unimaginable connections take place there locally, nationally and internationally. University, located especially in underdevelopment area, is more critical in her role of knowledge and connection for development. The University-driven development model can be a good model for sustainable development, which we can try together with local, national and international partners.

Dr. Young Gil Lee, Keynote Speaker

As a South Korean national, he studied in South Korea, USA and India in the areas of Public Administration and Theology. He served as a director at Korean Centre for International Cooperation in both A. N. College Patna and National Institute of Technology Patna, India. He has assumed responsibility of Vice Chancellor at Kumi University in Uganda since 2014. He currently serves also as an international advisor at Geneva Institute for Leadership & Public Policy, Geneva, Switzerland, and assists Knowledge & Connection track at Transform World Movement.