Aga Khan University set to expand

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kmaherali
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Professor Zulfiqar Bhutta awarded 2021 Roux Prize

Professor Zulfiqar Bhutta, of Aga Khan University (AKU) and The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids), has been awarded the 2021 Roux Prize, a US$100,000 award for turning evidence into health impact. He is the founding director of the Centre of Excellence in Women and Child Health and the Institute for Global Health and Development at AKU; and Co-Director of the SickKids Centre for Global Child Health, Inaugural Robert Harding Chair in Global Child Health and Policy, and a Senior Scientist in the Child Health Evaluative Sciences programme at SickKids. His work has made an integral contribution to global policy to improve maternal, fetal and newborn health.

The Roux Prize is administered by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at the University of Washington and is funded by founding board member David Roux​ and his wife, Barbara. Launched in 2013, it is the world’s largest award for evidence-based public health achievement and has drawn nominations from across the globe.

“Professor Bhutta has had a tremendous impact on maternal and child health, as a researcher and a leader,” said Dave and Barbara Roux. “We are thrilled to honor his incredible work and commitment to reducing health inequities.”

Professor Bhutta’s work has focused on newborn and child survival and undernutrition, with a particular emphasis on reducing health disparities and reaching underserved populations, including health care in conflict settings and humanitarian emergencies. He has played a crucial role in developing global consensus on interventions to address undernutrition in mothers and children, with publications that have informed World Health Organization (WHO) policy and global funding priorities. With his research team, he published guidance to prevent stillbirths and improve newborn survival that now is a core part of the global Every Newborn Action Plan.

“Professor Bhutta has been at the forefront of generating relevant evidence for public health policies in low- and middle-income countries,” said Soumya Swaminathan, Chief Scientist at WHO. “He is one of a handful of people globally who have successfully conducted large randomized controlled trials, which have resulted in changes in policy and practice, leading to significant improvements in health outcomes.”

Professor Bhutta was one of the first AKU faculty, and since beginning his career there in 1986, has managed to build a research programme on maternal and child health and nutrition with national and global impact, despite the challenges of political turmoil and economic insecurity in the country.

Between 1996 and 2002, he undertook a community outreach and research programme in an urban slum of Karachi and several rural areas of Pakistan, and for the past 15 years he has collaborated with the government of Pakistan to assess effectiveness of health care in real-world settings through partnering with public sector community health workers.

Many of these large community-based cluster randomized trials led by Professor Bhutta have generated findings that changed global policy, most notably the finding that using chlorhexidine for cord care among home births was associated with significant reduction in the risk of neonatal sepsis and death, and that public sector community health workers could successfully work with communities to reduce perinatal mortality. His team also worked with community health workers in tribal areas of Pakistan to improve polio and routine immunization coverage.

“Dr Bhutta is a powerhouse of knowledge,” said Dr Adil Haider, Dean of the Medical College at Aga Khan University. “His contribution to the field of medicine and research as a whole is invaluable, with his exceptional work having phenomenal impact not just at the Aga Khan University, but across Pakistan and truly around the globe. It has been an absolute pleasure getting to work alongside him, learning from him, and marveling at his zeal and determination. He strives for excellence in everything he does, and I cannot think of anyone more deserving of this prestigious award.”

Professor Bhutta has taken on unique joint appointments at SickKids and the SickKids Centre for Global Child Health, in addition to his role with AKU. He has succeeded in creating strong international collaborations and growing support for research on maternal and child health, and currently leads a consortium of 14 academic centers worldwide focused on improving health care in areas affected by conflict.

“Dr Bhutta is one of the world’s foremost experts in child and maternal health and nutrition studies, whose contributions have led to direct and significant impact on health care and policy in communities worldwide,” said Dr Stephen Scherer, Chief of Research at SickKids. “SickKids is proud to be home to Dr Bhutta’s groundbreaking translational research, which not only exemplifies our vision of ‘Healthier Children. A Better World,’ but continues to have a profound impact in science and in the lives of people around the world.”
Professor Bhutta is a designated Distinguished National Professor of the Government of Pakistan and the co-Chair of the Maternal and Child Health oversight committee of the WHO’s Eastern Mediterranean Regional Office.

“Congratulations to Dr Bhutta for this important award and recognition for his contribution as an advocate, a researcher and a passionate practitioner on maternal and child health and nutrition,” said Dr Ahmed Al Mandhari, WHO Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean Region. “His striving to translate data to information and his operational research into policy and best practices, from Pakistan to global-level commissions, is commendable as he brings in tremendous value reflecting priorities and challenges from the field programmes level, clinical practice and community-based projects in addition to his commitment to polio eradication efforts in our region.”

“Professor Zulfiqar Bhutta is one of the outstanding child health researchers of his generation,” said Richard Horton, editor-in-chief of The Lancet. “His work on child survival and nutrition has shaped international policy and practice for two decades. He has built a world-class team of child health scientists in Pakistan, conducted groundbreaking primary research to advance children’s health, and used that evidence to provide a rigorous and reliable foundation for advocacy and action. He richly deserves the recognition provided by the Roux Prize.”

The Roux Prize is intended for anyone who has applied health data and evidence in innovative ways to improve population health. Nominees may come from anywhere in the world and could include, but are not limited to, staff in government agencies, researchers at academic institutions, volunteers in charitable organizations, or health providers working in the community.

https://www.aku.edu/news/pages/News_Det ... EWS-002604
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The Centre for Regenerative Medicine at Aga Khan University

Directors' Message

The Aga Khan University – University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) partnership has begun a comprehensive and integrated research programme at AKU in stem cell biology and regenerative medicine.

The Centre for Regenerative Medicine is developing a cadre of stem cell scientists, clinicians, research associates, trainees and students under highest pedagogical, ethical, scientific and medical standards, working in a state of the art research centre in collaboration with colleagues at the Eli and Edythe Broad Center for Regeneration Medicine and Stem Cell Research at the University of California, San Francisco.

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Professor El-Nasir M. A. Lalani

Director, Centre for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research

Aga Khan University, Karachi

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Director, Eli and Edythe Broad Center for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research

University of California, San Francisco

https://www.aku.edu/crm/about/Pages/dir ... ssage.aspx
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Zakir Mahmood appointed Chairman, Board of Trustees

Mr Zakir Mahmood, the former President of Habib Bank Ltd, Pakistan’s largest bank, has been appointed Chairman of the Aga Khan University’s Board of Trustees by the University’s Chancellor, His Highness the Aga Khan. An AKU Trustee for the past nine years, Mr Mahmood is well-versed in AKU’s operations on three continents. In his message to the Trustees of the University, His Highness stated that “Mr Mahmood will bring to the Chair his profound experience in senior leadership roles, his extensive acumen in international institutional development and his thorough understanding of governance structures.”

Mr Mahmood takes over from internationally renowned health care leader Dr Haile T. Debas, whose seven-year tenure as Chairman was marked by growth in every aspect of AKU’s operations. “We are deeply grateful to Dr Debas for his leadership and service to the University,” AKU President Sulaiman Shahabuddin said. “An eminent surgeon, researcher, teacher and academic leader, and a passionate supporter of AKU’s mission, he made major contributions to its development throughout his 12 years on the Board of Trustees.” His Highness acknowledged that, “AKU owes Dr Debas a debt of gratitude that will be recognized for decades to come.”

A native of Eritrea, Dr Debas has held numerous leadership positions with the University of California, San Francisco and its School of Medicine, one of the world’s top medical schools. He was Founding Executive Director of UCSF Global Health Sciences, Dean of the School of Medicine, Vice Chancellor for Medical Affairs and Chancellor of UCSF. He is a member of the National Academy of Medicine, one of the highest honours in the field of health care.

Dr Debas was instrumental in developing AKU’s research capacity and overall teaching excellence by building partnerships with leading international institutions. The launch of AKU’s Centre for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research had much to do with his successful efforts to forge a unique partnership between AKU and experts at UCSF.

Mr Mahmood received his BE Engineering from NED University in Karachi and MBA and MS Engineering from the University of California, Los Angeles. He was President of Habib Bank Limited for almost 13 years, and has held senior positions with international banks in Ireland, the United Kingdom, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, France and Pakistan.

He is currently the Chairman of Kyrgyz Investment Credit Bank, Kyrgyzstan; First Microfinance Bank, Tajikistan; and Jubilee General Insurance, Pakistan. In 2001, the Government of France decorated him with the Chevalier de L’Ordre National du Mérite. In 2005, the Government of Pakistan honoured him with the prestigious Sitara-e-Imtiaz award.

“I look forward to working closely with Mr Zakir Mahmood to continue to advance the University’s efforts to improve people’s quality of life in Asia and Africa," President Shahabuddin said. “Chairman Mahmood brings to his new role a lifetime of international leadership experience, having held senior executive positions with multinational banks in Asia, the Middle East and Europe. We are fortunate to have him as Chairman.”

https://www.aku.edu/news/Pages/News_Det ... EWS-002664
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Kenyan breast surgeon to head regional cancer body

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Aga Khan University Hospital Consultant Breast Surgeon and Oncologist Dr Miriam Mutebi. FILE PHOTO | NMG

Miriam Mutebi, the first female breast surgeon in Kenya, has been elected to lead the largest continental organisation that specialises in the promotion of cancer care and control.

She is the president-elect of the African Organization for Research and Training in Cancer (AORTIC), a Pan-African, multi-disciplinary organisation that builds capacity for cancer advocacy, research, and training in Africa.

Dr Mutebi, who is a breast surgical oncologist at Aga Khan University Hospital (AKUH), will serve a four-year term, two as president-elect and the rest as president.

After receiving the news on her election as president, Dr Mutebi could not hide his joy.

“I am deeply honoured to be elected by fellow oncology healthcare workers from across Africa, to lead the advocacy and research work on cancer. It is a wonderful time for cancer control in Africa,” she said.

“Through AORTIC and other initiatives, we now have a dedicated, enthusiastic, continental workforce along the entire cancer continuum.”

She outlined her plans moving forward: “I intend to help us leverage our collective strengths and connections to innovate and develop collaborative, region-appropriate, evidence-based, data-driven solutions that help us improve journeys for cancer patients in Africa and to address current gaps.”

The cancer expert has been involved in extensive research and in 2019 alongside Dr Radovan Boca also from AKUH, Dr Mutebi pioneered the introduction of, 'Deep Inferior Epigastric Perforator' (DIEP) flap in East Africa.

The procedure involves harvesting body tissue from a breast cancer patient who has had mastectomy (surgery to remove all breast tissue from a breast as a way to treat or prevent breast cancer), and making a new breast for them, offering hope to breast cancer survivors.

https://www.businessdailyafrica.com/bd/ ... dy-3666050

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AWITI (Vice Provost of Aga Khan University): Wealthy nations have a moral obligation to finance low-carbon development pathways

In Summary

- Somehow, countries can pollute their way out of poverty.
- Leaders of major African and Asian countries are enamoured by and seek to replicate China’s fossil-fuel-powered growth that is heavily reliant on the export of manufactured goods

Article at:

https://www.the-star.co.ke/opinion/colu ... -pathways/
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https://www.dawn.com/news/1669465

AKU develops simulator for teaching cardiac procedures

The Newspaper's Staff ReporterPublished January 15, 2022

KARACHI: A senior cardiac and thoracic surgeon and his team at the Aga Khan University have invented a heart simulator which may go a long way in teaching resident doctors open-heart surgery and other related operations in much better conditions.

Dr Saulat Fatimi says since he presented the first prototype of pumping heart to Prince Karim Aga Khan, the AKU team’s aim was to develop such a simulator to teach residents procedures like coronary artery bypass, valve repair and replacements, surgeries for heart failure and congenital cardiac surgeries.

“Training residents on patients has been an international challenge and simulators in all specialties are the safest way to teach residents,” he said.

He added that the simulators in the market were artificial hearts or hearts which used pneumatic pumps to simulate beating. None could mimic the true heart mechanism and there was no fluid inside the heart to mimic blood. However, after years of failed and tiring attempts, “we are able to invent a beating heart system with magnetic pumps, fluid reservoir and timing device to produce systole and diastole in a cow’s heart”.

Dr Fatimi said it had been patented in the United States and they at the AKU were now ready to modify this to market it on a commercial basis. “Next step is to create heart cartridges with mitral and aortic valve diseases, septal defects, coronary artery lesions and other congenital cardiac problems. Our target market is university institutions with cardiac surgery residency programmes.”

Published in Dawn, January 15th, 2022
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Re: Aga Khan University set to expand

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Rashid Khalani Appointed New CEO At Aga Khan University Hospital

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“Khalani has been the Interim CEO since March 2021 and earlier served as the Chief Financial Officer.” /CFM

NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 7 – The Aga Khan University Hospital, Nairobi (AKUH, N) has appointed Rashid Khalani as its new Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

A statement from the institution indicated that “Khalani has been the Interim CEO since March 2021 and earlier served as the Chief Financial Officer.”

A Finance and Business professional by training, Mr. Khalani has had a long and distinguished career with Aga Khan University (AKU) and Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) since March 2005. Mr. Khalani has worked in different capacities in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Tanzania and since August 2012 in Kenya.

The Hospital provides care through a 300-bed main hospital in Nairobi and 50 outreach medical centres across East Africa.

https://www.capitalfm.co.ke/news/2022/0 ... -hospital/
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Re: Aga Khan University set to expand

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2022, February 26: Prince Rahim Aga Khan and Princess Zahra Aga Khan are expected in person in Nairobi, Kenya to attend the Global Convocation Ceremony of the AKU this year. The ceremony will he held virtualy online at 12:30pm London, UK time.

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More to come

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Re: Aga Khan University set to expand

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The National Council, ITREB and all Jamati leadership are pleased to inform the Jamat that Princess Zahra has graciously agreed to preside over the Global AKU Convocation Kenya ceremony that will take place in Nairobi on Saturday, 26th February 2022. While the event will be limited to only invited guests, it can be viewed live by Jamati members at https://convocation.aku.edu/live

In preparation for the event, kindly note that the Complex will not be accessible to the Jamat from the evening of Friday, 25th February 2022 and Jamatkhana services will not take place in the Complex until after the event is over as preparations are underway.

The entire Darkhana Jamatkhana compound will also not be accessible to pedestrians and vehicles from 6am to 6pm on Saturday, 26th February 2022.

However, Jamatkhana services will not be affected in the main prayer hall and Jamati members can access parking and the compound before 6am and after 6pm.
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Speech Princess Zahra AKU Convocation 2022 January 26 Video

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Speech Princess Zahra AKU Convocation 2022 January 26 Video:

http://ismaili.net/timeline/2022/2022-0 ... -zahra.mp4

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Re: Aga Khan University set to expand

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As received

*Ya Ali Madad Everyone,*

As you are aware, The Aga Khan University Global convocation took place today Saturday, February 26th 2022 with our beloved Princess Zahra in attendance.

It was very early in the morning and is available on YouTube. I have provided you a couple of links to view at your leisure.

https://youtu.be/hCCVufP0Tzc
(His Highness The Aga Khan address is around 1.18 hr into the ceremonies, followed by Princess Zahra)

Continue...
https://youtu.be/cYeGVRdORes

*Enjoy!*
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Re: Aga Khan University set to expand

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kmaherali wrote: Sat Feb 26, 2022 3:43 pm https://youtu.be/hCCVufP0Tzc
(His Highness The Aga Khan address is around 1.18 hr into the ceremonies, followed by Princess Zahra)
*Enjoy!*
The link to The Aga Khan's Speech is only a replay of the old speech as they have mentionned.

in the full ceremony link at : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hCCVufP0Tzc
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Re: Aga Khan University set to expand

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More than 660 students graduate at AKU’s global convocation

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Nairobi, Kenya, 28 February 2022 – More than 660 students in Pakistan, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda graduated from the Aga Khan University (AKU) in a live-streamed Global Convocation Ceremony that was watched by viewers around the world. The ceremony in Nairobi was attended in-person by Princess Zahra Aga Khan and saw the University commit to becoming carbon neutral in its operations by 2030. Climate scientist, author and activist Dr Peter Kalmus addressed the convocation as its chief guest.

Speaking on behalf of the University’s Chancellor, His Highness the Aga Khan, Princess Zahra Aga Khan praised the graduates for the resilience and agility they demonstrated throughout the pandemic and highlighted AKU’s contributions to the countries it serves.

“Globally, AKU has educated 18,000 individuals,” Princess Zahra said. “It cares for more than two million patients every year from internationally accredited hospitals and was recently ranked among the top 100 universities in the world in public health. It also serves as a trusted advisor to government and is a powerful advocate for pluralism and women’s empowerment. During the pandemic, the value of the University’s capacity for cutting-edge inquiry has never been clearer.”

The urgency of addressing climate change was emphasised by the speakers. AKU has committed to becoming carbon neutral in its operations by 2030, as has the Aga Khan Development Network as a whole. The University is amongst the first institutions in Pakistan and East Africa to commit to achieving carbon neutrality. Together with the Aga Khan Health Services, it has developed a unique accounting tool for analysing its emissions that it is making available to other universities and hospitals at no cost.

“We need a huge number of engaged, passionate, courageous climate activists,” Peter Kalmus said. “We need to come together, with courage, conviction and creativity, to stop the meteor that’s hurtling toward us. No one is safe from global heating. There is no hiding from it, on this tiny, connected, pale blue dot of a planet.”

The Global Convocation Ceremony also featured the inauguration of President Sulaiman Shahabuddin, who became the third president in AKU’s 39-year history.

Calling himself “profoundly honoured to have been chosen to serve by our Chancellor, His Highness the Aga Khan,” President Shahabuddin pledged to carry forward the University’s mission of creating and applying knowledge to the solution of pressing problems in Africa, Asia and beyond. He cited AKU’s cutting-edge research in artificial intelligence, stem cell science, gene editing and child health. He also noted that AKU will be launching new medical and nursing degree programmes in East Africa, building a new Aga Khan University Hospital and University Centre in Kampala and launching a Faculty of Arts and Sciences in Karachi.

Addressing the graduates in all four countries, Princess Zahra said: “No AKU class has worked harder for this moment than you have. The last two years challenged you with lockdowns, quarantines and isolation. In the years to come, you will always be able to look back and draw strength from your achievements during this momentous period.”

Adnan Ali Khan, a graduate of the Medical College in Karachi, echoed that sentiment in his valedictory speech.

“I can safely say that this class of AKU graduates will be one of the most tenacious, resilient and open-minded groups of professionals to come from this institution,” he said. “I think I speak for my entire class when I say this: We are ready.”

Students received diplomas and degrees from AKU’s Medical Colleges, Schools of Nursing and Midwifery, Institutes for Educational Development, Graduate School of Media and Communications and Institute for the Study of Muslim Civilisations.

https://www.akdn.org/press-release/more ... onvocation
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Aga Khan University and SDSN - Climate Change

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https://www.aku.edu/news/pages/News_Det ... EWS-002683

Challenges of climate change, health, and nutrition in Pakistan

Mar 7, 2022

​Climate change and extreme weather events are contributing to a wide range of health and food security risks around the world. These threats are particularly severe in low- and middle-income countries like Pakistan that are often the least able to respond. This calls for urgent and proactive actions to meet the many challenges posed by climate change whilst achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030 in Pakistan.

These views were expressed by experts and stakeholders speaking at a seminar on ‘Pakistan’s Challenges of Climate Change, Health, and Nutrition in the Context of Sustainable Development Goals: Strategies for Change’ organised by the Aga Khan University’s Institute for Global Health and Development, IGHD.

Pakistan ranks 154 out of 189 countries and territories on the Human Development Index 2020 and this reflects the country’s social vulnerability to disaster, with high poverty and malnutrition rates. There are wide disparities and many marginalised communities, with minority groups are at a particular disadvantage due to their socio-economic status, location and political circumstances.

Keynote speaker Professor Jeffrey Sachs, President of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network spoke about the global network and extended support to the SDSN Pakistan​ hub being set up under the IGHD umbrella. He expressed serious concern about the impact of global conflicts on the progress of sustainable development and stressed on the need for an approach in which the best minds around the world are working together collaboratively to find common solutions to address the climate change crisis.

“In the midst of war and conflicts in the world, we are on a trajectory to breach 1.5 degrees Celsius limit in a decade, or even faster. In Pakistan, with deserts, water stress and heatwaves, this can be deadly,” he stated. Professor Sachs highlighted the six areas for Sustainable Development Solutions Network, Pakistan to cover: education for boys and girls; a public health system; decarbonisation of energy; sustainable agriculture and land use; robust urban infrastructure; and digital connectivity for all.

Increasingly extreme climate events, such as floods, prolonged heatwaves, and droughts, are having a particularly negative impact on the health, mental health and well-being of vulnerable and marginalized communities across Pakistan, including adolescents and women. This was addressed in the second keynote speech by Javed Jabbar, policy analyst and former senator.

He underscored the impact of Pakistan’s choices and its need to find a way forward where the country’s resilience and adaptability to calamities arising from climate change are concerned. “There is a dire need for structural reforms post the 18th Amendment, to ensure cohesion between the federal and provincial health systems, and especially the integration of population welfare department with health department,” he asserted.

Strengthening vulnerable populations is key and Prince Rahim Aga Khan addressing the seminar via video, shed light on the Aga Khan Development Network’s commitment to groups in the regions it serves. “We build climate resilience by working with communities, alongside government, civil society and private sector so that in the face of climate change, people not only survive but also thrive,” he said.

Dr Zulfiqar A. Bhutta, Distinguished University Professor and Founding Director of the IGHD, underscored the need to develop capacity in Pakistan for coordinated action on climate change, health, and nutrition. He presented detailed data on climate change’s impact on agriculture and food security. “There is slow and subtle, yet definite impact of climate change, extreme weather events, and rise in temperatures on crop nutrient. Rise in temperature in Pakistan, particularly in the last decade has reduced the protein content and other micronutrients in wheat and rice,” he mentioned, while speaking about the link between climate change and the quality of crop production.

Dr Abid Suleri, Executive Director, Sustainable Development Policy Institute, shed light on the Sustainable Development Goals implementation during the pandemic. He stated that the countries with pre-existing social inequalities are most prone to social impact of COVID-19.

SDSN Pakistan can coordinate research and influence broad multisectoral national response. It provides an opportunity for research and policy institutions across the country, with interests in climate change, health and health-related SDGs to join efforts to accomplish the agenda by 2030.

Zakir Mahmood, Chairman, AKU’s Board of Trustees; Sulaiman Shahabuddin, President AKU; Dr Carl Amrhein, Provost and Vice President, Academics; and Dr Adil Haider, Professor and Dean, AKU Medical College, Pakistan also spoke at the event.​
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Aga Khan University and SDSN - Climate Change

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Aga Khan University and SDSN - Climate Change

2022 March 6th and 7th.

Pakistan's Challenges of Climate Change, Health and Nutrition in the Context of Sustainable Development Goals: Strategy for Change.

VIDEO SPEECH OF PRINCE RAHIM: http://ismaili.net/timeline/2022/2022-0 ... -rahim.mp4

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Re: Aga Khan University set to expand

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The Aga Khan University Signs MOU with Baylor College of Medicine

Baylor College of Medicine announces the signing of a non-exclusive Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with The Aga Khan University for the exchange of expertise and collaboration on health sciences teaching, research, writing and distribution, and international development.

Under the terms of the MOU, Baylor College of Medicine and The Aga Khan University will work collaboratively in a bidirectional manner, leveraging the strengths of both institutions, with the goal of understanding the determinants of cardiometabolic diseases and identifying culturally relevant interventions that mitigate risks associated with cardiometabolic diseases among South Asians.

“We hope that this bidirectional initiative will allow the generation of new knowledge in the area of cardiometabolic health for South Asians and knowledge sharing between the two institutions, both of which bring rich traditions of academic excellence,” said Dr. Salim Virani, professor of cardiology and cardiovascular research at Baylor College of Medicine. “Our initial efforts will focus on learning more about determinants of cardiometabolic disorders among South Asians and the best practices to mitigate this risk. This will be done by leveraging both community level resources and big data, keeping in mind the cultural context. This is an area of great clinical need.”

Baylor College of Medicine and The Aga Khan University have a long-standing relationship that has been built on trust, personal relationships, mutual understanding, and a willingness to collaborate on research and educational initiatives that align well with the mission and vision of both institutions. Both parties are excited to work with each other and to build a lasting and wide-ranging partnership.

“South Asians constitute one-quarter of the world’s population, and emerging data indicates they are particularly susceptible to cardiometabolic diseases,” said AKU Provost and Vice President, Academic Carl Amrhein. “The Aga Khan University has a longstanding commitment to addressing the growing burden of these diseases in the countries it serves, including Pakistan, where an estimated one-third of all deaths are due to cardiovascular diseases and diabetes. We are greatly looking forward to strengthening our partnership with the Baylor College of Medicine and to collaboratively delivering knowledge and solutions that help save lives.”

https://www.bcm.edu/news/the-aga-khan-u ... f-medicine
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Pakistan’s Prof Bhutta ranked among top 100 scientists in medicine globally

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Professor Zulfiqar Bhutta of the Aga Khan University (AKU) has been ranked among the top 100 medicine scientists in the first edition of top scientists ranking for medicine published by Research.com, one of the major knowledge centres for medicine research.

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He is the only scientist from Pakistan and the low- and middle-income countries who made it to the top 100

​Professor Zulfiqar Bhutta of the Aga Khan University (AKU) has been ranked among the top 100 medicine scientists in the first edition of top scientists ranking for medicine published by Research.com, one of the major knowledge centres for medicine research.

The ranking is based on criteria that considers h-index, which indicates how productive and influential a researcher is, publications and citations. The ranking team examined 166,880 scientists on Google Scholar and Microsoft Academic Graph, and over 65,743 profiles for the discipline of medicine.

Professor Bhutta is the only scientist from Pakistan and the low- and middle-income countries who made it to the top 100.

“As is the case for other recent recognitions, though a personal recognition, this ranking reflects the achievements of scores of young researchers and faculty members across the world who have worked with me on problems of the most marginalized and impoverished women and children in poor communities,” commented Professor Bhutta, who is the founding director of the Centre of Excellence in Women and Child Health and the Institute for Global Health and Development at AKU; and Co-Director of the SickKids Centre for Global Child Health, Robert Harding Chair in Global Child Health and Policy, and a Senior Scientist in the Child Health Evaluative Sciences programme at The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto.

“Congratulations to Professor Bhutta and his team for this great achievement. Their relevant research at AKU has changed lives not only in the countries where we seek to serve but also globally,” said AKU President Sulaiman Shahabuddin.

Professor Bhutta is one of the original members of AKU’s faculty since the establishment of the University. Having begun his career at AKU in 1986, the University provided a foundation for the development of an illustrious career in which he built research programmes on maternal and child health and nutrition with national and global impact, despite the challenges of political turmoil and economic insecurity in Pakistan.

Between 1996 and 2002, Professor Bhutta and his team at the University undertook extensive community outreach and research programme in an urban slum of Karachi and several rural areas of Pakistan, which then expanded to many regions and provinces of Pakistan as well as other low- and middle-income countries. Over the last two decades, he has closely collaborated with the government of Pakistan to assess effectiveness of health care approaches and innovations in real-world settings through partnering with public sector community health workers.

Many of these large community-based cluster randomized trials led by Professor Bhutta have generated findings that changed global policy, most notably the finding that using chlorhexidine for cord care among home births was associated with significant reduction in the risk of neonatal sepsis and death, and that public sector community health workers could successfully work with communities to reach those at greatest risk and reduce perinatal mortality as well as maternal morbidities.

His work has been the foundation of multiple international guidelines, including changing World Health Organization policy on the treatment of persistent diarrhoea and malnutrition along with establishing lady health workers (LHW) as foundational members of community-based interventions in Pakistan, South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. His team in Pakistan and Canada has extensively worked on strategies to improve maternal and child health and nutrition in conflict settings and emergencies. Notably his team works with community volunteers and health workers in tribal areas of Pakistan to improve polio and routine immunization coverage.

At AKU, Professor Bhutta holds the title of Distinguished University Professor – the highest faculty rank the University can confer – as well as an Award of Distinction and Award of Excellence in Research. He has received several international awards and recognition.

Recently, he received the Roux Prize for turning evidence into health impact and the John Dirks Canada Gairdner Global Health Award for outstanding achievements in global health research.

https://thepolicytimes.com/pakistans-pr ... -globally/
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Princess Zahra Pavilion Wins International Architecture Award

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The Aga Khan University Hospital, Karachi's private wing, The Princess Zahra Pavilion, won the third place at the 12th Casalgrande Padana Grand Prix awards 2019/2021. Backed by a rich 30-year history, with more than 1,800 projects entered by 1,300 designers from all across the globe, the Casalgrande Padana Grand Prix is a permanent fixture on the international architectural scene.

A seven-member jury comprising renowned architects, interior designers and design journalists from across the world announced the decision after carefully evaluating numerous architectural designs competing in the latest edition of the competition. The awards ceremony took place on May 27, 2022 at the MUDEC Museum and Exhibition Centre of Milan dedicated to interdisciplinary research on the cultures of the world.

The Princess Zahra Pavilion won third place in the “Public Building" category. Other award categories included Shopping and Office Centres, Residential Buildings and Façade Cladding, Outside Flooring, Swimming Pools and Spas.

Some noteworthy architectural and design features of the Princess Zahra Pavilion include the interiors, colour, texture and flooring patterns and, decorated carpets. The ceramic flooring of the hospital, with its light, bright surfaces, offers a novel take on the textile and symbolic tradition of the Persian carpet. The decorative patterns and coloured borders add emotional value to the technical performance and hygienic qualities of the material, bringing a welcome homely sensation to the setting.

The facility was carefully designed to provide peace and tranquillity to patients as they recuperate from clinical procedures. Inspired by Islamic art and culture, the architecture and landscaping have been carefully crafted to create a calming environment that contributes to patients' healing process and early recovery. The building, which started operations in 2019, serves as the private wing for the hospital. It was named the Princess Zahra Pavilion in 2021, in honour of Princess Zahra Aga Khan.

For more information on the award, click here https://www.casalgrandepadana.com/en/gr ... 2019-2021/
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Empowering Role of Nursing Profession

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Video Quote: The Empowering Role of Nursing Profession

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Video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dvnyKO0hFz8
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Mozilla, in partnership with the Aga Khan University (AKU)

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Kenya: Mozilla Unveils New Multimedia Platform in Kenya

Nairobi — Mozilla, in partnership with Aga Khan University, has unveiled a new app named Pocket, in a move aimed at further improving online user experience.

Built on the Android and iOS platforms, the app allows users to access written and visual content of their liking and even save it for offline browsing at a later date.

The partnership with Aga Khan University will ensure that local content is curated and distributed to better optimise the product to meet the needs of Kenyan online users.

Speaking during the launch, Pocket Vice President & General Manager Mozilla, Matt Koidin said their mission is to ensure that the Internet becomes a global public resource, open and accessible to all.

"We believe in an Internet that puts people first, where individuals can shape their own experience, are empowered, safe, and independent. Through Pocket, we are empowering people to discover, organize, consume and share content that matters to them. The ability for users to save articles to "read it later" will be transformative. We believe that together with our Kenyan partners we will keep making the App better for Kenyans," Matt said.

Articles saved in Pocket are stripped of ads and formatting which limits memory storage needs and users can also control how much memory they allow Pocket to use.

Additionally, downloads are only possible over Wi-Fi to meet the needs of cost-conscious users who often have limited bandwidth.

"The Aga Khan University's Media Innovation Center has partnered with Mozilla to identify and work with a team of curators who have put together fascinating and exceptional content from East Africa. For the first time, we have a series of collections from outstanding Kenyan curators who bring fresh perspectives from Kenya and East Africa" said Njoki Chege, Director, Media Innovation Center.

https://allafrica.com/stories/202206290410.html
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Pivotal international partnership to enhance cancer care and mental well-being

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Aga Khan University Nairobi’s Clinical Research Unit - Dr. Mansoor Saleh (fourth from right) and staff who will be implementing DART

In July 2021, Roxana Sultan, an experienced health sector executive, had the opportunity to serve on a remote TKN assignment with the Aga Khan University (AKU). The primary objective was to support the AKU’s Cancer Center and Brain and Mind Institute to develop its strategic plans within the University's overall integrated framework for the mental health of cancer patients. The six-month assignment culminated in the establishment of a new partnership to enhance cancer care and mental well-being.

Roxana has over 20 years of experience working in the Canadian health system, including the oncology and mental health sectors, with a focus on patient-centred care and the use of data to inform best practices in medicine. She holds an Adjunct Lecturer appointment with the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto, where she teaches a graduate course on Intelligent Medicine and Machine Learning, and she also serves as the Chief Data Officer and Vice President, Health with the Vector Institute for Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Toronto, Canada.

Roxana’s past role as Director of Strategic Planning and Implementation with the University Health Network (UHN)’s Princess Margaret Cancer Centre (PMCC) in Toronto provided her with exposure to the innovative approaches that are being implemented to deliver the highest quality of care and to treat cancer patients holistically, taking into consideration both physical and mental health needs.

After meeting with AKU’s Dr. Zul Merali (Brain and Mind Institute) and Dr. Mansoor Saleh (Cancer Center), it became evident that PMCC had much to offer AKU at the intersection of physical and mental health services specially dedicated to patients living with cancer. It was clear that there was immense potential to share knowledge and best practices to integrate mental health assessment into cancer care at AKU, as well as to continue to enhance the PMCC's capacity for culturally adaptive care.

Roxana worked closely with Diana MacKay, Global Practice Lead with the Brain and Mind Institute, to shepherd forward a partnership opportunity. With support from the teams at AKU and the PMCC, Roxana and Diana facilitated formal and informal conversations between clinical and administrative leaders, which culminated in the development of a partnership to advance clinical, research, and education programs in cancer care. Meena Merali, Director, Transformation & Strategic Partnerships, PMCC · UHN was also involved in this process.

The memorandum of understanding (MOU) executed between the two organizations states a wide variety of expected outcomes of the collaboration, including:

1. Enhancing and supporting clinical, academic, and research opportunities at both organizations
2. Education and training opportunities, including Fellowship programs, staff education and patient education, which may involve Faculty and trainee exchange visits
3. Exchange of scientific and scholarly research materials, publications, and other information, and
4. Other initiatives aimed at promoting and enabling collaboration, innovation, and knowledge exchange to advance cancer care control in Kenya, Canada and throughout the rest of the world.

Preliminary activities involve the implementation of a Distress Assessment and Response Tool (DART) developed by Dr. Madeline Li at UHN. DART is an electronic screening tool that supports patients and their care teams in understanding needs for integrated, interprofessional care. AKU is exploring the potential to use the tool with cancer patients to undertake clinical screening for symptoms of physical and mental distress, thereby better understanding prevalence and enhancing treatment pathways.

Because DART is a universal screening process, it aims to remove bias, ensuring that all patients, no matter their age, race, ethnicity or other personal characteristics, have equal access to services and support throughout their cancer experience . In the pilot study of the DART program, 88% of patients said they felt the program improved communication of symptoms and concerns to their health care team . DART is now established as a routine, standard of care at PMCC, where completion of DART has been associated with decreased risk of suicide and increased cancer-related survival.

DART has already been implemented in countries in Asia and the Middle East, and its continued expansion into new geographic areas has the potential to generate a rich source of data on the specific mental health needs of cancer patients from diverse cultural, racial, and sociological backgrounds, which can be used to compare and further improve the quality of patient-centred care internationally.

This new partnership is an illustration of AKU’s Strategic Integrated Framework for Mental Health in action. The Brain and Mind Institute is explicitly adopting a “big tent” approach to co-develop initiatives and programs that recognize intersecting co-morbid conditions, such as cancer and mental well-being.

“Hats off to colleagues in AKU’s Global Engagement Office who helped move this opportunity from concept to signed MOU,” remarked Diana. “Ultimately, it’s the patients admitted to our university hospital in Nairobi who will benefit from this collaboration, and that’s what matters most.”

Beyond the DART program, discussions are now underway between UHN and AKU to explore additional avenues for strategic engagement.

It is Roxana’s and the AKU’s team ambition that this collaboration will drive fruitful knowledge exchange and continuous quality improvement across both partner sites.

“There is often a perception when institutions from the Western world partner with those in the developing world, that the transfer of knowledge and value is unidirectional; however, this partnership is an example of how collaboration of this nature can bring opportunities and advancement in a bilateral fashion,” said Roxana. “Bringing together these two international leaders in healthcare and education – east and west – is an opportunity to drive global impact for cancer patients. I am delighted to have been able to contribute, even in a small way, to the establishment of this initiative through my TKN assignment.”

https://the.ismaili/tkn/pivotal-interna ... well-being
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Why Aga Khan University Hospital Is A Centre Of Excellence

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NAIROBI, Kenya July 21 – For 64 years, the Aga Khan University Hospital continues to set the standard for comprehensive healthcare and modern medical education in East Africa.

The hospital that prides itself in offering quality services was on July 4, 2022, accredited for the fourth time by the Joint Commission International (JCI), the recognized global leader in health quality standards.

The US-based JCI is an independent not-for-profit organisation that accredits and certifies health care organisations globally.

“Quality is not just an accident. It can never be an accident. It is a process. It has to be inbuilt. It has to be in your DNA,” the hospital’s Chief Executive Officer Rashid Khalani said.

The re-accreditation was a culmination of a rigorous audit process based on a review of the hospital’s compliance with 291 standards and 1,199 measurable elements.

It involves the analysis of healthcare delivery processes and documentation including infection control, standards of physician practice, patient experience, medication management, the safety of care and the qualifications and competencies of staff and physicians.

Watch:
Why Aga Khan University Hospital Is A Centre Of Excellence

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tAxA-ZdZ7-8&t=2s

“We believe in quality services. We believe that what is critical to a patient is the clinical outcome and some credibility”.

“Therefore, we have benchmarked ourselves our processes our standards our people against the best in the world. Therefore, when the patient comes to us, they have the confidence that they will get the best quality of care. Therefore, that is what it means for us and it is very close to our hearts,” Khalani said.

The JCI accredited the Hospital first in July 2013 becoming the first hospital in East Africa to receive the coveted accreditation. The Commission feted the Hospital again in 2016 and 2019.

Khalani underscored that the hospital has committed over the years not to compromise its quality of services.

“One thing comes to mind is quality and that’s what we want that when people talk about Aga Khan University Hospital. Quality should be the first thing that comes to people’s mind when they think about the hospital,” he said.

The Hospital is renowned in providing high-quality care and treatment based on international standards for full spectrum of heart and cancer conditions.

The centre located at the Jimmy Sayani Building consists of five operating theatres, twenty-three intensive care beds (including a cardiotherapic intensive care unit) and separate coronary intensive care u​​​nit, neonatal intensive care unit and two radiation therapy units for cancer treatment.

With the external validation, the Hospital is working on positioning itself to become a medical tourism hub in the region.

The Hospital in February 2020, made the headline after performing the first successful penile implant surgery procedure to treat erectile dysfunction.

https://www.capitalfm.co.ke/business/20 ... xcellence/
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Dr Karmaliani: first nurse from Pakistan inducted to the American Academy of Nursing

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Dr Karmaliani: first nurse from Pakistan inducted to the American Academy of Nursing

Aug 5, 2022Share

In a first for Pakistan and big milestone for the nursing fraternity in the country, Dr Rozina Karmaliani, dean of the Aga Khan University's School of Nursing and Midwifery, AKU-SONAM, becomes the first Pakistani nurse to be inducted as Fellow of the American Academy of Nursing, FAAN.

AAN is one of the largest international organizations of nursing, catering to the generation and dissemination of nursing knowledge for improved healthcare outcomes and nursing practices worldwide. Their Fellowship is the highest honour bestowed to nursing professionals for the impact they have made on healthcare through education, practice, research, and policy – for championing health and wellness, locally and globally.

The nomination and selection of members is done through a rigorous process after which the inductees are expected to make global impact on future healthcare policies.

Among nearly 3,000 Fellows of AAN worldwide inducted over the past 50 years of its existence, Dr Karmaliani is the first and only member within Pakistan and the Central and South Asian regions, putting the country on the map in the field of nursing. She is the second AKU alumna to become part of this prestigious pool, the first being Dr Salimah Meghani from the University of Pennsylvania, United States.

"I am truly honoured to be representing Pakistan on such an important global platform. With the rapidly shifting trends in healthcare, it is crucial for nurses from the developing world to have a seat at the table where important policy dialogues and decision-making takes place, so they can have a bigger impact on healthcare outcomes and nursing practice on this side of the world," commented Dr Karmaliani.

Being a long-time member of the Aga Khan University and the first alumna dean of the School, Dr Karmaliani has served the institution in various leadership, research and academic capacities over the past three decades of her association with AKU.

She will be recognized for her contributions to healthcare, and officially inducted to the Academy at its annual Health Policy Conference taking place on October 29, 2022, in Washington, DC.

https://www.aku.edu/news/Pages/News_Det ... EWS-002815
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AKU Flood Response Fund

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As floods wreak havoc in Pakistan, the Aga Khan University is part of the relief efforts by federal and provincial governments, and public-private institutions. Our teams are setting up healthcare camps and mobile units in affected areas; and providing medical support, including medication and other resources, to local public facilities.

Join our hands in supporting our fellow citizens in this hour of need https://giving.aku.edu/relief.aspx
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New £7.6 m research centre launched to improve mental and physical health in Afghanistan and Pakistan

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Posted on 10 October 2022

The University of York and the Aga Khan University (AKU) in Karachi will jointly lead the establishment of a new research centre to improve mental and physical health in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

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The new Centre, which will be based at the Aga Khan University.

The Centre, which will focus on tackling non-communicable diseases (NCDs) including depression and anxiety, heart conditions and diabetes, is one of a number of NCD research centres globally funded by the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) and Department of Health and Social Care, UK.

The NIHR Global Health Research Centre for Improving Mental and Physical Health Together will include collaboration with Rawalpindi Medical University, Pakistan, Khyber Medical University, Pakistan and international NGO HealthNet-TPO in Afghanistan.

NCDs are rapidly increasing and are now responsible for 64% of deaths and disabilities globally. In Pakistan and Afghanistan, they account for almost a million deaths every year.

Urgent need

There is an urgent need for new interventions that are effective and can be delivered at scale in low-resource, conflict-affected settings. Researchers say the five-year £7.6m initiative provides new opportunities to develop, test and embed evidence-based treatments that address NCDs.

The new Centre, which will be based at the Aga Khan University, will engage with patients and families through Community Advisory Panels, which will help design, conduct, and disseminate research findings.

At least 60% of the new Centre’s research trainees will be women.

Ground-breaking

Professor Faith Osier, President of the International Union of Immunological Societies and Chair of the NIHR Global Health Research Centres Funding Committee, said: “These new Centres are truly ground-breaking - it’s the first time we’ve seen anything like this level of investment in non-communicable disease research in low and middle income countries and we’re excited to see the advances that the next five years will bring.”

Kamran Siddiqi, Professor in Global Public Health at Hull York Medical School and the University of York and one of the centre’s lead researchers, said: “We will train researchers, particularly women scholars, to become tomorrow’s research leaders. Over time, we will develop strong, diverse academic leadership and our research will grow and get adopted, bringing wider health, societal, and economic benefits to the region.”

Priority

Dr Zainab Samad, Professor and Chair of the Department of Medicine at AKU, added: “Contextual research for non-communicable diseases that is locally led is a priority for the Centre and necessary to the development of the next generation of research leaders in Pakistan and Afghanistan.”

The new centre will officially be launched at an event in Islamabad on 1 November 2022.

https://www.york.ac.uk/news-and-events/ ... -pakistan/
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Re: Aga Khan University set to expand

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https://www.sfu.ca/sfunews/stories/2022 ... -agre.html

SFU and Aga Khan University further collaborations with new agreement

November 22, 2022

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Simon Fraser University President Joy Johnson (left) and Aga Khan University Sulaiman Shahabuddin (right).

Simon Fraser University (SFU) and the Aga Khan University (AKU) have signed an agreement to facilitate joint research, faculty and student exchanges and collaborations between the two institutions that address pressing global issues, such as climate change and environmental sustainability.

There are longstanding connections between the universities. AKU’s Institute for the Study of Muslim Civilisations and SFU’s Centre for Comparative Muslim Studies have offered jointly-run summer courses, and students from AKU and SFU have completed virtual internships at each other’s campuses.

The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed in Burnaby by SFU President and Vice Chancellor Joy Johnson and AKU President Sulaiman Shahabuddin envisions a broader partnership, allowing for a range of cooperative endeavours.

“This partnership with the Aga Khan University will allow both institutions to build on our shared values as we work together to tackle some of humanity’s most pressing challenges,” says SFU President Joy Johnson. “I know that AKU does incredible work and I am excited about the opportunities that students, faculty and staff will have to learn with and from the community there.”

“The problems that individuals, communities and countries face today are increasingly global in nature,” says President Shahabuddin. “Partnerships that bring like-minded institutions together across borders and boundaries are indispensable to addressing the challenges we face.

“All of us at AKU are eager to continue collaborating with Simon Fraser University, one of Canada’s top universities, to advance knowledge and educate future leaders.”

With both universities committed to addressing key global challenges, discussions on joint initiatives are already underway.

AKU recently established its 3,700-acre Arusha Environmental Research Reserve near Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. In October, a delegation from SFU visited the site, a living laboratory, demonstration and community collaboration space focusing on studies related to climate change, environmental stewardship, biodiversity, agriculture, community engagement and other fields.

Their visit to Nairobi and Arusha provided an opportunity to learn more about the work of AKU and the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) in the region and better understand the kinds of research and environmental sustainability activities that the two institutions could undertake collaboratively.

The MOU is in keeping with SFU’s strategic sustainability and climate action plan and its goal of mobilizing the entire institution to embed climate action throughout its operations, research, academics, and community and global engagement.

The agreement is the second between SFU and an agency of the Aga Khan Development Network. Under a 2019 Memorandum of Understanding, faculty members from the University of Central Asia, an AKDN agency, are pursuing postgraduate degrees at SFU.

In 2018, SFU and UBC conferred a special joint honorary degree on His Highness the Aga Khan, in recognition of his lifelong service to humanity and the intersection of this work at both universities, during a ceremony in Vancouver.

Founded in 1983, the AKU’s mission is to improve the quality of life in Asia, Africa and beyond through world-class teaching, research, health-care delivery and service.
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