ITU opens its arms to academia as first universities
admitted to participate in work of the Sectors
Geneva, 14 January 2011 — ITU today welcomed the first 12 academic institutions admitted to participate in Sector activities under a new Resolution which encourages the involvement of universities and their associated research establishments in the work of the Union.
Algeria’s Institut National des Télécommunications et des Technologies de l’Information et de la Communication (INTTIC) and Tunisia’s Ecole Nationale d’Ingénieurs de Tunis (ENIT)both join the work of all three ITU Sectors – Radiocommunication (ITU-R), Telecommunication Standardization (ITU-T), and Development (ITU-D).
China’s Nanjing University of Posts and Telecommunications (NUPT) and Beijing-based Tsinghua University join the work of ITU-R and ITU-T.
Waseda University, Japan, Tunisia’s University of Sfax and Ecole Supérieure des Communications de Tunis, India’s Sinhgad Technical Education Society and Aalborg University’s Center for Teleinfrastruktur in Denmark, join the work of ITU-T.
The Kigali Institute for Science and Technology in Rwanda, the Open University of Tanzania, and Bucks New University, UK, all join the work of ITU-D.
Speaking at a special ceremony to welcome the new arrivals, ITU Secretary-General Dr Hamadoun Touré said academia would bring a fresh new voice to the work of ITU’s three Sectors. “We are excited about the important contribution academic institutions will make to enriching ITU’s breadth of knowledge in key emerging areas,” he said. “These institutions are the seed-beds that nurture the rising stars of tomorrow’s ICT industry, be they engineers or business leaders. Their unique perspective will help ITU remain at the forefront of the industry it serves.”
The welcome ceremony also featured two distinguished professors, Professor Obi of Waseda University, Japan, and Professor Mellor of the United Kingdom Telecommunications Academy (UKTA), who were named by Dr Touré as ITU’s new Special Envoys for Academia.
Representing a major step forward in broadening ITU’s membership base, Resolution 169 (Admission of academia, universities and their associated research establishments to participate in ITU’s work) specifically provides for reduced membership costs for academic institutions. Fees are set at CHF 3,975, or 1/16 of the value of the Sector Member contributory unit, for institutions from developed countries; and CHF1,987.50, or 1/32 of the value of the Sector Member contributory unit, for institutions from developing countries.
Participating in the work of ITU Sectors will give academic and research institutions the opportunity to exchange views, knowledge and experiences with a multiplicity of actors from the developed and developing worlds, and from the public and private sectors. It also provides new opportunities for institutions to develop mutually-beneficial partnerships with manufacturers, operators, financial institutions, other research institutions, and public authorities from across ITU’s 192 Member States.
Academic institutions will have the chance to play an active part in the ongoing activities of ITU’s Sectors and to influence the emergence of new technologies and standards. Their participation in ITU meetings, seminars and workshops will also enable them to enlarge the scope of their work beyond purely technical and commercial concerns, to embrace wider issues in the ICT public policy and regulatory arena.
Subject to an initial four-year trial period, Resolution 169 allows academic institutions to participate in the work of any or all three Sectors until the next Plenipotentiary Conference in 2014.
Under the terms of the Resolution, academic institutions wishing to join one or more ITU Sectors must be supported by the Member State of the Union to which they belong, and must not replace bodies currently listed with the Union as Sector Members or Associates.
A report by ITU’s governing Council, based on an evaluation of the three Sector Advisory Groups, will be submitted to the next Plenipotentiary Conference in 2014, to enable a final decision to be taken on academic participation in the work of the Union.
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Photos of the event are available at the ITU Flickr site: