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UN chief Ban appoints Indian to University Council


United Nations: An Indian academician is among 12 people appointed by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to the global body’s University Council to formulate its principles and policies, consider and approve biennial budget and work programme.

Radha Kumar, 63, the Director General of New Delhi-based think tank Delhi Policy Group was named to the governing UN University Council. The 12 appointees, who will take office next month, will serve for terms of either three or six years.

The main functions of the UN University Council are to formulate the principles and policies of the University, govern its operations, and consider and approve its biennial budget and work programme, a press statement said.

Appointed members of the Council serve in their individual capacity and not as representatives of their country’s government. They are selected with the aim of achieving a geographic and gender balance, with due regard for major academic, scientific, educational and cultural trends, as well as each member’s fields of expertise.

Kumar is a specialist in ethnic conflicts, peacemaking and peace-building. Formerly Director of the Mandela Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies at Jamia Millia Islamia University, Kumar has also been a Senior Fellow in Peace and Conflict Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations in the city.

She had also served as one of the three-member Group of Interlocutors appointed by the Government of India for Jammu and Kashmir.

The other members appointed to the UN University Council include Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ghana Ernest Aryeetey, Dean of Faculty of Law at National University of Singapore.

Simon Chesterman, lecturer at Harvard and MIT Isabel Guerrero Pulgar of Chile, Executive Director of Arab Reform Initiative Bassma Kodmani of Syria and Dean of School of Public Policy and Management at China’s Tsinghua University Lan Xue.


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