APPRA Update

Dear Colleagues,

Time flies. It was almost two years ago when we started planning for the APPRA 2017 Conference and it is now just slightly more than a month before the Conference takes place. We have got good response so far and everything seems to be on track. Here is an update on the Conference.

The Theme of the Conference: ‘Promoting Peace and Upholding the Transcendent Dignity of the Human Person in the Asia-Pacific Region’
Dates of the Conference: 23-25 August 2017
Venue: Dewan Persidangan Universiti (DPU), Universiti Sains Malaysia, Georgetown, Penang, Malaysia

Supporting Programme:

  • Poster Exhibition on the theme ‘Seeds of Hope’ at USM Museum, 23-27 August 2017
  • Visits to Ghandi Peace Institute on 22 August, Streets of Hope on 24 August and Taiping Museum on 25 August 2017. Transportation, Meals and Guide provided. You may choose to attend one and all or none at all! We are assuming that everyone is coming along but if you are not, for whatever reasons, please inform us early.. Datuk Anwar Fazal is organizing the above visits. Here are some of the details you should know.


The following three tours are being organised and it will be assumed you will be attending. If not, please inform the organisers below. All the tours are free of charge and include refreshments as a gift from the supporting organisations. PLEASE INFORM US IF YOU ARE NOT COMING AS WE DO NOT WANT TO CREATE ANY WASTE.


Tuesday, 22 August 2017 - 4.30pm to 7.30pm

ThePenang Gandhi Peace Centre(PGPC)is at Waterfall Road next to the Botanical Gardens. It is a symbol ofMahatma Gandhi’svision and action for making a sustainable, just and peaceful world. It is more than a promotion of Gandhi `s values and beliefs; it is also to practice it and take it into action. The launching of the PGPCis a tribute to the amazing work of Gandhi at a time when the world is challenged before by violence, conflicts, wars and increasing racism and bigotry. Once, he stated that; “Be the change that you want to see in the world”, and so thePGPCwishes to be a platform for teaching and sharing ideas for changes that we want to see in the world. The visitors will be putting up a symbol of Peace.

ThePenang Municipal Park orTaman Perbandaran Pulau Pinang, is a huge park at the edge of George Town and next to the PGPC. Better known as theYouth Park, this recreational park for the people of Penang is accessed by a single one-way route, entering through Persiaran Kuari. The Municipal Park was born from quarry land and was created in the early 70's, to provide a recreational area for youths. In its earliest incarnation, the Youth Park, as it was called at that time, had a skating rink (which it still has) and an outdoor auditorium. There was also a place for archery and hiking. No matter the season or reason for your visit, this national historic landmark is a setting for enjoying many pursuits: Jogging Track, Children Playground, Archery Range, Skate Park, Graffiti Park, Camping Site, Mountain Bike Tracks, and much more! It has also a historic Peace Park.


Thursday, 24 August 2017 – 4:40 pm to 9.00pm

The Street of Harmony is the celebration of diversity through various religious institutions side by side. That street is called Jalan Kapitan Keling (formerly Pitt Street) and now celebrated worldwide as a model of religious and cultural harmony. As you journey through the Street of Harmony, you walk the oldest and most historical path trodden by the diverse people who came from the far reaches of Asia and Europe 200 years before. You cannot escape the sense of cultural multiplicity that confronts you here in the form of sounds, sights and smells. The street is home and workplace to generations of settler families. It is home to many outstanding religious sites where historical communities find solace. It lends itself to a plethora of religious and secular festivals and celebrations all year round. This street is shared by all. It epitomises the cultural coexistence of George Town’s diverse communities. The following religious institutions will be visited; St. George’s Church, Goddess of Mercy Temple, Sri Mahamariamman Temple, Kapitan Keling Mosque and the Khoo Kongsi. Dinner will be at the Masjid Melayu Acheh where we will be hosted.


Friday, 25 August 2017 - 2.30pm to 10.00pm

The town of Taiping (which means ‘everlasting peace’ in Chinese) was born out of desire for peace and harmony some 150 years ago. It is located south of Penang some 70 kilometres away and a fascinating history of war and peace. It was a new town specially built to mark Peace. The town was once called the ‘Tin Capital’ of the world. It is a town of splendid beauty, of natural habitat with a setting of a lake, rivers and hills. It is also full of cultural diversity and a fascinating urban heritage. Taiping is located in the state of Perak in Malaysia. It is some 70 kilometres south of the beautiful and famous island of Penang. The town has many Malaysian firsts, among them Malaysia’s first railway (from Taiping to Port Weld), the first modern prison, the first museum, the first hill resort (Maxwell’s Hill, now knows as Bukit Larut), the first Lake Garden. It has many delightful tourist sites. Taiping is also home to a Commonwealth War Cemetery, dedicated to many war victims. It is one of best kept cemeteries in the region. They have a Peace Park and a Peace Avenue with a series of Peace Poles and stone write-ups of words “May Peace Prevail on Earth”. The discussion on a Peace Museum in Taiping will be held and dinner will be served there.

We will assume you will attend all the above site visits. If you are not able to, kindly email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Main Programme: Pending confirmation on a few things here is the tentative programme that we have in mind.

(Tuesday)22 August 2017

  • Arrival of participants
  • Tour

(Wednesday)23 August 2017

  • Opening Ceremony - Speeches by Director, CenPRIS, the twoCo-Secretary Generals of APPRA, Representative of Soka Gakkai Director of Japan Foundation Kuala Lumpur (tbc),and Vice Chancellor of USM.
  • Poster Exhibition/Photo Session/Refreshment / Press Conference
  • 1st Keynote - Kevin
  • 1st Plenary - Patrick Hiller (Olivier, Yoko, Aslam Khan, Ikeo and Jude)
  • 2nd Keynote - Chaiwat
  • 2nd Plenary - Janjira (Ajay, Aries and Luky)
  • 4:40-5:40 pm APPRA General Meeting
  • 8:00 pm Dinner Reception
  • (Thursday) 24 August 2017
  • 3rd Keynote -Kodama
  • 3rd Plenary - Yamane(Chang/Kim,Wang, Roy, Murad)
  • 4th Keynote - Datuk Anwar Fazal
  • 4th Plenary - Kamarulnizam (Nasharuddin/Sabur)
  • APPRA Council Meeting
  • SOH Walk

(Friday) 25 August 2017

  • 5th Keynote -T.S. Dzulkifli
  • 5th Plenary - Mahazan-Mizan (Hood and others)
  • Open Dialogue- Arai & Omar (Mohideen, Cik Gu Azmi,)
  • 2:30 pm Leave for Taiping
  • 10:00 pm Return to USM/Hotel

Parallel Sessions.

Parallel sessions will also be organized. Participants will have to register before their papers can be slotted into the various Parallel Sessions which will be held concurrently with the Plenary Session.

Registration Fee.

We have decided to extend the deadline to the 31st of July 2017 but payment has to be made via bank transfer. We urge those who have not done so to do so soon. Unfortunately we have not been allowed to do on-site cash collection of registration fees as this is the university regulation.

Full Papers.

As advertised earlier we expect the full papers to be submitted before the end of July 2017. If you cannot comply please do not worry you can still make a verbal presentation but your paper will not be included in the Programme Book we are preparing.
The length of the paper should be around 6,000 words. As we intend to publish the papers we will duly inform you of the format preferred soon. We expect to give you 2- 3 months after the conference for the revision of your paper if you need to do it.

Participation without presentation.

We welcome anyone wishing to participate in the Conference without wanting to present any papers. However, registration fee is compulsory. Please pay using bank transfer. We have already given the details earlier.


We expect you to make your own arrangement.

Weather in Penang.

Hot and humid all year round but pretty breezy on campus which has garden-like environment!

We look forward to seeing you soon.


Call for Panels and Papers

The Centre for Policy Research and International Studies (CenPRIS), Universiti Sains Malaysia in collaboration with its conference partners will be hosting the Asia Pacific Peace Research Association (APPRA) Conference from 23 to 25 August, 2017 at Universiti Sains Malaysia, Penang, Malaysia.

Theme: ‘Promoting Peace and Upholding the Transcendent Dignity of the Human Person in the Asia-Pacific Region’

Dates: August 23-25, 2017

Venue: Dewan Persidangan Universiti, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Penang, Malaysia


The First World War or the Great War which broke out between 1914 to 1918 was supposed to be ‘the War to end all Wars.’ Yet not too long afterwards, in just about two decades, the world was to witness a more horrendous global conflict in the Second World War. The extent of deaths and destruction and the manner in which these were inflicted were unprecedented in human history. The creation of the Atomic Bomb and its use in Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the subsequent proliferation of nuclear weapons constitute a potent reminder of the risks and horrors of any nuclear confrontation. It was against this backdrop that the United Nations was set up in October 1945, among other things, to save “succeeding generations from the scourge of war and to reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights and in the dignity and worth of the human person.” Nevertheless, peace in the post Second World War era has become elusive. It seems to be more an academic concept than a living reality. The need to uphold human dignity which is universally invoked appears to be a mere rhetoric rather than a desirable virtue. Especially in the Asia-Pacific Region conflicts of all kinds continue unabated, from conventional Wars to sporadic insurgencies fuelled by any number of causes. Terrorism has become common and rampant. It is violence, in its various forms and in all its manifestations, that seems to be the preferred path of resolving conflicts. There is still so much human suffering that is evident everywhere as a result of the denial of the rights of the people to a decent life, education, health care, freedom of movement, thoughts and actions, cultural and linguistic autonomy, justice and fair economic opportunities. Peace research needs to be re-focused on the most fundamental issue that has to be addressed beyond looking at the external nature and phenomenon of conflicts and crises.

This year’s APPRA Conference intends to focus on the theme of ‘Promoting peace and upholding the transcendent dignity of the human person in the Asia-Pacific Region’ with a view to re-affirming our faith in the realizability of our common vision for mankind that the United Nation has eloquently spelt out in the Preamble to its Charter. The plenary will address this theme and it is hoped that all the other panels will try to relate to it. Panel or paper proposals are hereby invited from interested parties. Please send us by e-mail, the outline or abstract of your proposal as soon as possible to the Secretary of the Conference at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Dates of the Conference : 23 – 25 August 2017
Convener of the Conference : Associate Professor Dr. Azeem Fazwan Ahmad Farouk
Conference Secretary : Professor Emeritus Dr. Omar Farouk
Co-Secretary Generals of


: Dr. Janjira Sombatpoonsiri

Thammasat University, Bangkok, Thailand

Dr. Pradeep Dhakal

Chetanalaya Institute, Kathmandu, Nepal

There will be several special lectures but the highlight will be the Keynote Address on the theme of “Promoting Peace and Upholding the Transcendent Dignity of the Human Person in the Asia-Pacific Region”.

Confirmed Keynote Speakers:

  • Tan Sri Dato Professor Dzulkifly Abdul Razak, former Vice-Chancellor of Universiti Sains Malaysia and current Chairman, Board of Directors, Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia,Malaysia “Peace Starts with Me – Lessons from a hibakusha”
  • Dato’ Prof. ( Dr.) Anwar Fazal, Right Livelihood College, Penang, Malaysia “Streets of Harmony: Building Bridges, Crossing Them: The Penang Experience”
  • Professor Dr. Kevin Clements, Chair and Director, The National Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies,University of Otago, New Zealand “The Current State of Peace Research in the Asia-Pacific Region”
  • Professor Dr. Katsuya Kodama, Secretary-General, International Peace Research Association (IPRA) “ Hiroshima – Nagasaki Process”, Japan
  • Professor Dr. Chaiwat Satha-Anand, Peace Information Centre, Thammasat University, Thailand “Nonkilling Asia as a Peace Research Agenda?”

Other Conference Activities:

  • Visit to the Streets of Harmony.
  • APPRA Council General Meeting
  • Poster Exhibition
  • Film Show
  • Post-Conference Visit to Taiping

Here are some of the confirmed panels:

  1. Peace Education at Peace Museums -convened by Prof. Yamane Kazuyo, Ritsumeikan University
  2. “US military vs Asian lands and people” – convened by Patrick Hiller, Oregon Institute of Peace
  3. Kampung Mizan : Re-thinking the idea of development- convened by Associate Professor Dr. Mahazan, Malaysian Islamic Science University [USIM]
  4. Aging with Dignity- convened by Associate Prof. Dr. Saidatulakmal Mohd, USM-RIKEN International Centre for Aging Science , URICAS, Universiti Sains Malaysia
  5. Religion, Spirituality and Peace – convened by怀Chetalanaya Institute, Nepal
  6. Mother Earth convened by Sahabat Alam Malaysia
  7. Challenges of Peace Building in the Deeply Polarized societies: The Case of Identity, Ethnicity and Territory based Conflicts in Deep South of Thailand and Arakan
  8. State of Myanmar –AMAN
  9. Gandhian non-violent action – Prof. Dr.Vidya Jain
  10. Multi-national/ethnic federalism as a framework of peacemaking – Prof. Dr. Tatsushi Arai
  11. Transforming the inter-communal and Buddhist/Muslim conflict in Western Myanmar,
  12. Eastern Bangladesh, and ASEAN- Prof. Dr. Tatsushi Arai.
  13. Education for Social Healing & Reconciliation-Professor Dr. Roy Tamashiro of Webster University, USA, Dr. Chang Ku Do, in Korea, Prof. Yang Shanyou, China, Prof. Kazuyo Yamane, Ritsumeikan University, Japan.
  14. “Populism in Asia and its non-violent responses”-Dr. Janjira Sombatpoonsiri Faculty of Political Science, Thammasat University (Panel Coordinator), Panelists: Dr. Ajay Gudavarthy, Politics Department, Jawaharlal Nehru University, India, Dr. Aries Arugay, Faculty of Political Science, University of the Philippines, Diliman, the Philippines and Dr. Luky Djani, Executive Director, Institute for Strategic Initiatives, Indonesia
  15. “Nonkilling Asia” Prof. Chaiwat Satha-Anand, Thammast University (moderator) The panelists are Pradeep (Nepal), Emma Leslie (Cambodia), Jose Abueve (Philippines), Siwach Sripokangkul (Thailand).
  16. Conflict Early Warning and Agro-terrorism, Dr. Ali Maksum and Surwandono, Universitas Muhammadiyah and Ms. Zuliana, CenPRIS.

Panels under Consideration

  1. Teaching non-violence
  2. The South China Sea and the Potential for Peace, Coexistence and Cooperation
  3. Teaching and Learning Human Rights
  4. Human Dignity
  5. The Nuclear Threat in Northeast Asia
  6. Re-examining the Role of Peace Institutions
  7. Pacifism and the School Curriculum
  8. Ending Insurgencies
  9. Indigenous Knowledge and the Decolonization of the Mind
  10. The ASEAN Community and its Peace Vision
  11. Transforming the United Nations
  12. Humanitarian Relief
  13. Culture of Political Parties
  14. Parliamentary Dignity
  15. Multi-Culturalism and Human Dignity
  16. Law and Peace

Target Participants:

Scholars, Activists, Peace Advocates, Public Officials, NGOs, Religious Leaders, Teachers, Students

International Advisors:

  • Janjira Sombatpoonsiri, Thammasat University, Thailand
  • Pradeep Dhakal, Chetanalaya Institute, Nepal
  • Professor Dr. Katsuya Kodama, Secretary General, IPRA
  • Professor Dr. Chaiwat Satha-Anand, Thammasat University, Thailand
  • Professor Dr. Kyoko Okumoto, Osaka Jogakuin University, Secretary-General, Peace Studies Association of Japan
  • Professor Dr. Chung Ko Doo, Director of No Gun Ri Peace Memorial, South Korea
  • Professor Dr. Tatsushi Arai, School for International Training (SIT) Graduate Institute,USA
  • Professor Akihiko Kimijima, President, Peace Studies Association of Japan
  • Professor Kazuyo Yamane, Ritsumeikan University, Japan
  • Professor Dr. Ryotaro Katsura, Ritsumeikan University (Vietnam-Japan University)
  • Professor Dr. Kevin Clements, University of Otago, New Zealand
  • Professor Dr. Sung Chull Kim, Institute of Peace and Unification Studies, Seoul National University, Korea
  • Professor Hyeyeon Kim
  • Sabur, Asia Muslim Action Network, AMAN
  • Sri Nuryanti, Research Centre for Political Studies, LIPI, Indonesia

Local Advisors:

  • Dato’ ( Dr.) Anwar Fazal, Right Livelihood College, Penang
  • S.M. Idris, Consumers Association of Penang
  • Mohideen Abdul Kader, Citizens International
  • Professor Emeritus Dato’ Dr. Nasruddin Ghouse, Universiti Sains Malaysia
  • Professor Dato’ Dr. Ahmad Murad Merican, Universiti Sains Malaysia
  • Professor Dr.Ahmad Fauzi bin Abdul Hamid, Universiti Sains Malaysia
  • Associate Professor Dr. Sundramoorthy, Universiti Sains Malaysia
  • Associate Professor Dr. Mohd. Reevany Bustami, Universiti Sains Malaysia

Conference Partners:

  • Chetanalaya Institute, Nepal
  • Right Livelihood College, Malaysia
  • Penang Ghandi Peace Centre, Malaysia
  • Asia Muslim Action Network ,AMAN, Thailand
  • Toda Institute
  • Think City
  • Restu International College


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