- A Charles Sturt University academic is contributing to social development knowledge and global social responsibility through his leadership of an international professional body
- He is the first non-US citizen to hold the position of President of the International Consortium for Social Development (ICSD), and has set forth an ambitious agenda for his second term in the role
- He argues there are moral and ethical imperatives that those contributing to climate change have the responsibility to significantly contribute to climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies
A leading Charles Sturt University academic is enhancing the University’s international presence and contribution to global social responsibility through his leadership of an international professional body.
Professor in Social Work, Manohar Pawar (pictured) in the Charles Sturt School of Social Work and Arts, has concluded his first term (2017-2021) as President of the International Consortium for Social Development (ICSD) and has commenced his second four-year term (2021-2025). He is the first non-US citizen to hold the position.
As President of the ICSD, Professor Pawar recently presided over the 22nd International Consortium for Social Development (ICSD) Biennial conference in July.
Professor Manohar Pawar welcomed more than 300 development scholars, practitioners, decision makers and development agencies from 42 countries across six continents to the online conference.
The focus of the conference was ‘Poverty, Inequality and Social Development: innovations around the world’ and was organised by the Centre for Social Development in Africa at the University of Johannesburg, South Africa.
“In this so-called civilised world, racism is rampant, and inequality and discrimination in many forms are growing phenomena that we are experiencing and observing in our lives,” Professor Pawar said in his welcome address,” Professor Pawar said.
“Security and conflict threats, and destabilising regional tensions are reappearing.
“Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, poverty and people’s vulnerabilities have increased in many countries. Social development thoughts, once some people mistakenly limited to developing countries, have become increasingly globally relevant to both developed and developing countries.
“In a way, the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic is promoting that human life, health, environment and peace, if not more, are equally important as economic development.
“In this context, organisations such as the ICSD and social development research centres have a significant role to play.”
During the conference, Professor Pawar was invited to join the eminent panel consisting of Professor Lena Dominelli (University of Stirling, UK) and Dr Imtiaz Sooliman (Founder and Executive Director of Gift of the Givers, a leading international disaster relief NGO), to discuss climate change, humanitarian aid and social inclusion.
Professor Pawar introduced the theme by presenting a social development perspective.
“There are moral and ethical imperatives that those who are contributing to climate change have the responsibility to significantly contribute to climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies, programs and provisions throughout the world, particularly to poor countries and vulnerable population groups in all countries,” he said.
“This is not only reasonable, fair and just from the human rights perspective, but also from a ‘neoliberal ideology’, or the principle of user or polluter pays the price.”
As ICSD President, during the course of the conference, Professor Pawar conferred Social Development Leadership awards on 10 leading scholars to promote social development education and practice.
Also under Professor Pawar’s leadership as President, the ICSD Africa branch was launched.
“The branch will create an enabling platform to learn from and contribute to dynamic social development experiences in Africa and disseminate these throughout the world,” Professor Pawar said.
In his concluding conference address as ICSD President, Professor Pawar presented his vision for the ICSD during his second four-year term. Some of the targeted areas that the ICSD will pursue include:
- Achieving UN consultative status
- Improving governance systems, and strengthening regional branches
- Disseminating archived social development journals through digitalisation, and
- Developing a team of enthusiastic and committed colleagues to lead and implement the vision
“As Professor in a leading social work program at Charles Sturt University, it is an honour and privilege to serve the ICSD as its President and to make a contribution to global social responsibility, which is one of the strategic critical goals of the University,” he said.