NNA - The American University of Beirut (AUB) hosted a conference entitled "Lebanon Collaboration for Sustainable Development Goals" in the Maamari Auditorium in the university's Olayan School of Business, on AUB's campus.
The opening session started with the Lebanese National Anthem and was attended by Care-taker Minister of Education and Higher Learning Elias Bou Saab and UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon Sigrid Kaag. Among those who were present from AUB are its President Dr. Fadlo R. Khuri, OSB Dean Dr. Steve Harvey; OSB Associate Dean, management professor and representative of Global Compact Network Lebanon Dr. Dima Jamali, and Director of News and Media Relations Simon Kachar, in addition to faculty, staff, media representatives and students.
AUB President Dr. Fadlo R. Khuri addressed the audience saying: "The Global Compact Network is a key step forward for us, not just a university but as a nation. Lebanese diaspora has been remarkably successful. The diaspora invests a lot of its money in the only institutions they trust that are Lebanese banks and universities. The global compact is a major step towards more investment that could help transform the culture to a sense of ethical and socially responsible transparency. To add, the building of confidence through the global compact will be transformative. I have great expectations that this compact will help lead in transparent nations. "The future is bright for Lebanese people and AUB students."
Second to speak was Dean Harvey who said: "It is a very proud moment for us to continuously be in support of Global Compact as a Business School and to have the honored responsibility of hosting this event. As a premier Business School in the region, it is extremely import to be part of the forwarding steps to reach great nations. We are young minds and we should deal with the issues of sustainability."
Next to speak was Kaag; she said: "Such network is considered to be a big deal for Lebanon, and I am fully confident that this country with its abilities will catch up modernity on all levels and lead in the upcoming few years. Sustainability for profit is the only way to reach clean growth and there is no business nowadays without this concept. The need is to create jobs, and that happens by having a knowledge-based economy and society. Helping marginalized communities is greatly fundamental because there is no peaceful society that excludes a party from it."
Minister Bou Saab, as keynote speaker of this conference said: "Great ideas start from universities, and this fact is considered a solid proof of how education can benefit business sectors. In Lebanon and upon following these ideas, we see that the majority of them weren't applied and that goes for the enormous deficiencies. Building great societies start with proper access to quality education. As a first step, improvements in education should be done starting with successful facilities and emerging communities. Training teachers and refining their conditions will build a trust situation that will allow us to feel safe. We should reach the level where graduate fresh students become able of creating opportunities for others and not search for job vacancies. Proper Education build good economic and investing in education will always lead to win situation."
Then Jamali spoke about the Network's activity plans, Corporate Social Responsibility in Lebanon, the importance of private and public partnerships around the ten global compact principles and sustainable development goals.
The conference that continued for the whole day and featured several sessions and closing remarks, addressed the goals of sustainable development and displayed various ongoing efforts and partnerships in Lebanon that are related to those goals.