National seminar on ‘Sustainable Development Goals’
A two-day National seminar on ‘Sustainable Development Goals’ was inaugurated in Eric Mathias Hall of St Aloysius College on 13th February 2020.
Dr K. Sankaran, Director, NITTE Justice K S Hegde Institute of Management, was the Chief Guest and inaugurated the programme. Rev. Fr Dionysius Vaz, SJ, Rector of St Aloysius Institutions presided over the programme. Rev Dr Praveen Martis SJ, Principal, Rev. Dr. Joseph Xavier SJ, Director of Indian Social Institute, Bengaluru, Rev. Dr. Denzil Fernandes SJ, Executive Director of Indian Social Institute, Delhi, Dr Joyce Sabina Lobo, the Convenor of the programme were on the dais.
Dr Sankaran, in his keynote address, equated sustainability to that of survivability. Talking specifically on the focus area, he suggested that sustainability and development should be parallel. He problematized the understanding about sustainable development and observed new ways to awaken the human intellect and psyche and to gather new ideas towards achieving this noble goal. Interrogating the current situation, he questioned to what extent are individuals today equipped and empowered in order to work towards the set goals. He stressed the importance of the self-governing systems and that it needs to be enhanced. According to him, the micro level enhancement is the need of the time. Finally, he acknowledged that students are the reservoir of energy in every context, especially in the context of sustainable development. His session ended with an interesting and enriching Q&A session.
Director of Indian Social Institute, Bengaluru, Rev. Dr Joseph Xavier SJ proposed the objectives and goals of the seminar. Making a cursory note of world summits and conferences on sustainable developments, he wished to put on table, the Indian story. He urged in a deeper understanding of the global realities and issues faced by the global community. He observed that there exists a sense of global commitment but lacks support. In doing so, Dr Joseph located the seminar in a broader context of the discourse of sustainable development. Setting forth the agenda, the team aspires to know what more and how best can individuals and institutions do and work for a better sustained future after this 2-day national seminar. Stressing on the need for researchers and scholars to come up with creative ideas, studies from a critical perspective, he added inclusivity as a key consideration. Rural and tribal contexts too must be the preview of this continual study. Paper presentations for the seminar have been broadly classified under heads namely, ending poverty, health, quality education, and gender equity and climate concerns.
Rev. Fr. Dionysius Vas SJ presided over the inaugural session. He opined that Jesuit institutions have been striving hard to achieve sustainable development goals in their educational endeavours. This collaborative venture of three institutions – St Aloysius College, Mangaluru, Indian Social Institute, Bengaluru and Indian Social Institute, Delhi is a unique attempt to bring together students, teachers, researchers and scholars in this interdisciplinary field to think, reflect and act towards a sustained future. He proposed that education should not just be career oriented but must empower, aid and strengthen individuals and through them, the society at large. He also stressed on the transforming power of education.
Mr Manoj Dyson Fernandes, compered the programme. Rev. Dr Praveen Martis SJ, welcomed the gathering. Dr Joyce Sabina Lobo proposed the vote of thanks.