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The Crucial Problem in a Global Collaboration

Dr. Djuwari

During the past 30 years of my global speakership experience, I have eye-witnessed that almost all global collaborations are not sustainable. Some of the agendas at the conference are signing the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for collaboration. It can be collaboration in research, research publication, student and faculty exchange, and the like. Unfortunately, after signing the MoU, almost all are not sustainable: no follow up. 

The problem above is almost due to the absence of ongoing communication, but mostly and seriously due to the changes of leadership in a university or college. If we analyze it based on the theory of leadership, it can be judged that all of the faculties in universities tend to depend on the figure of people rather than the established system they have designed. This is globally a crucial problem. The system stops by the time the “figures’ positions” is terminated. Therefore, it is essential to discuss how a global collaboration can be sustainable. 

Global collaboration emerges as the key to unlocking sustainable development. It can foster synergy among universities, organizations, and individuals to address shared challenges. A global collaboration in promoting sustainability, we need to identify key strategies to enhance cooperation across borders. 

Global collaboration transcends geographical boundaries and political differences. Through this, we can recognize that sustainability issues are inherently interconnected and require collective solutions. In a world where environmental degradation in one region or university can have far-reaching consequences globally. The interdependence of economies and societies enhances the need for coordinated efforts to ensure equitable access to resources and opportunities for all.

One of the fundamental aspects of global collaboration for sustainability is knowledge sharing. By exchanging best practices, innovations, and scientific findings, universities can accelerate progress toward common goals. We can share great technologies, state-of-the-art- strategies, or best research methodologies. We can also collaborate in networking so that it enables us to learn from each other’s experiences and adopt effective solutions.

A global collaboration should facilitate resource mobilization. We should leverage diverse expertise and possible financial resources to tackle complex sustainability challenges. Through partnerships between universities or academia, resources can be pooled to fund research, implement projects, and scale up initiatives with greater impact. When university faculties initiate any program with some fruitful agendas, they can also generate possible channel funds among their governments or their universities’ spare budgets.  

A global collaboration between university faculties may also unlock resources, expertise, and innovation for sustainable development. Therefore, universities should invest in clean technologies, sustainable infrastructure, and responsible business practices, public-private partnerships to drive transformative change across sectors.

University leaders with the established system should be able to foster cross-sectorial collaboration. This requires an integrated approach that transcends traditional sectorial boundaries. They have to foster the programs across such as research, research publication, and student-faculty exchange. Synergies can be maximized, and trade-offs minimized. 

University leaders must prioritize the inclusion and empowerment of the university experts and their real expertise with their global mindedness. Their faculties’ role is the key to sustainability efforts. By supporting faculty-led initiatives, promoting indigenous knowledge, and ensuring participatory decision-making processes, collaboration can be more inclusive, equitable, and sustainable.

However, we must remember that the best-established university system will be the key to making the program sustainable. Never depend on the people or human beings who are sitting on the seats in any university or organization! Rather, and more importantly, we have to depend on the best-established system we design in our universities or organizations. All should obey the best-established system fairly and equally. Ignore the practice of likes and dislikes!

Dr. Djuwari is an Associate Professor at Universitas Nahdlatul Ulama Surabaya (UNUSA) Indonesia. Surabaya, the editor of some research journals in the Philippines and Indonesia. He is also a journalist in some newspapers in Indonesia; the President of International Association of Scholarly Publishers, Editors, and Reviewers (IASPER), a small business owner of Djuw Café. 


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