Dear friends and followers,
I'm excited to announce that I will be one of the inaugural Fellows of Global Vision International (GVI). GVI is an award-winning experiential education association formed in 1998, which operates sustainable development programs in 13 countries located on five continents. GVI works with local partners and communities on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
My project will focus on teaching research methods skills to citizens in Pokhara, Nepal. Along with local GVI staff, we'll also be forming a small research team and working on strengthening and sustaining the research capacities of GVI. More details on the research project will be coming soon.
I've had wonderful conversations so far with GVI Staff, including Shayle Havemann, Director of Programs; Melissa Torres, Vice President for Institutional Relations; Cheryl Martin, Regional Director for India and Nepal; and Kim Coetzee, Head of Education and Sustainable Development. I am excited that they see wide potential for this project; I hope it is something that could be long-term and useful for the organization as a whole.
Along the way in my journey to Nepal (which will happen in Spring 2019), I will be trying to make contact and form partnerships with local universities in Pokhara and Kathmandu, both around this project and regarding the internationalization of education in Nepal.
I've titled this post a "learner's journey." One thing I've learned from my years in international education is how important it is to learn rather than to teach. It is also important to understand and grapple with how Nepal has been conceptualized and imagined in the West -- to learn about the Orientalism and exotic imaginaries of what it means to "go to Nepal." For this insight, I am reading a wonderful book by the anthropologist Mark Liechty, Out Here in Kathmandu: Modernity on the Global Periphery (2011), which is rich with empirical and theoretical information, as well as grounded narratives.
Other books and reports on my reading list include:
- Jennifer Rothchild, Gender Trouble Makers: Education and Empowerment in Nepal
- Acharya, Sushan, A comprehensive review of the practices of literacy and nonformal education in Nepal
- Khaniya, Tirth Raj, New horizons in education in Nepal
- Pramod Bhatta, Education in Nepal : problems, reforms, and social change
- Prashant Jha, Battles of the new republic : a contemporary history of Nepal
- Malcolm Langford, University of Oslo, Andy Sumner, King's College London, Alicia Ely Yamin, Harvard University, The millennium development goals and human rights : past, present and future
- David Seddon, Nepal : maintaining secularism - an up-hill struggle
I'll post more information in the coming months. In the meantime, if you have any reading suggestions, please let me know (firstname.lastname@example.org)