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Speakers at the Annual Meeting of the National Academic Council of the Institute of Policy Studies said
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan is facing an entrenched governance challenge seeking to move towards sustainable development. A space of knowledge that creates stability where solutions are implemented in the form of tangible actions to solve the challenges that the country faces, says the press release.
The country urgently needs to solve important problems such as bad governance, internal conflicts, corruption, flawed education system, moral crisis, environmental challenges, and health problems. This requires stability in government policies, resolving conflicts, using youth as resources, creating narratives and national impact, and promoting constructive change through research.
Scientists, technologists, and theologians saw this at the annual meeting of the National Academic Council of the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS). This annual conference seeks to obtain intellectual input from a field of experts in the field of IPS research projects and strategic thinking on national issues.
The President of IPS Khalid Rahman, Professor Dr Anis Ahmed, Vice-Chancellor, Riphah International University said; Vice Admiral (Retd) Iftikhar Ahmed Rao, Special Assistant to PM on Naval Affairs, Prof. Dr. Qibla Ayaz, Chairman, Islamic Ideology Council of Pakistan; Dr. Syed Mohammad Anwer, Justice, Federal Shariat Court, Razia Sultana, Member, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Public Service Commission; Representative (Retd) Syed Abrar Hussain, Vice Chairman IPS; Dr. Anwar-ul-Hasan Gilani, Chairman, Pakistan Council for Science and Technology; Syed Abu Ahmad Akif, former Secretary to the Federal Government; Mohammad Bashir Jan Mohammad, CEO, Westbury Group of Companies, Karachi; Mirza Hamid Hasan, former federal secretary, water and power; Dr. Syed Tahir Hijazi, former vice chancellor of Muslim Youth University; Saima Hamid, Vice Chancellor, Fatima Jinnah University, Rawalpindi; Syed Irfan Hyder, Vice Chancellor, Ziauddin University, Karachi; Dr. Syed Junaid Zaidi, former COMSATS rector; Dr. Masood Mehmood Khan, Curtin University, Australia; Dr. Shahida Wizarat, Principal, College of Economics and Social Development, IoBM, Karachi; Prof Jaleel Aali, former HoD Urdu, FG Sir Syed College; Dr. Naveed Butt, Surgeon, Federal Government Hospital; Dr. Noreen Sahar, associate professor and chair, Department of Anthropology, IIUI; while Prof. Dr. Fakhr-ul-Islam, director of research and educational outreach at IPS moderated the session.
While stressing the importance of raising the level of intelligence and policy of important national challenges, the speakers addressed the critical issue of poor governance as a source of national concern. They said that simplifying quick fixes at the expense of addressing serious governance challenges with long-term solutions is problematic. Since problems cannot be solved in isolation, it requires a sustainable approach, with immediate and short-term and long-term solutions, to change governance.
The speakers called for comprehensive education reform to build a strong foundation for the country’s future. They said that compulsory IT, technology, and vocational education, with a focus on character development and ethics, is a useful solution. This is important because the quality of graduates directly affects the stability of the country, the ability to take on challenges, and leadership qualities. In addition, there should be a single national curriculum to prevent the increasing suffering and misunderstanding of education due to different education systems.
Declaring the negative impact of the current educational system on the research of youth and the ability to innovate, the speakers emphasized that young people must be supported as agents of change. For that, youth-centered policies and changes in curriculum through research and certification are necessary. Furthermore, the development of research and innovation in colleges and universities will be maintained through the government’s progressive and flexible policies.
The speakers also highlighted the importance of establishing tolerance and readiness to face environmental challenges in time. In addition, changes must be made in health, agriculture, climate, and economic systems for social welfare and national development.
Explaining the international dimension of Pakistan’s problem, the speakers stressed that the country must fight against external forces ready to exploit it by promoting national influence and action based on solutions in the current conflict of history. They suggested that Pakistan must first deal with the increase in abortion, violation of law and order, internal conflicts, corruption, and putting personal interests above national interests at the policy and executive level.