Aug 22, 2022

RCAPS Seminar “The quest, five decades of curiosity and research resilience”

On July 18, RCAPS welcomed Professor Monte Cassim, President of Akita International University (AIU) to a RCAPS seminar.

[Report by Professor MAHICHI Faezeh (APS)]
Professor Monte Cassim, President of Akita International University (AIU), former President of Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University (APU) and former President of Shizenkan University, gave a seminar at APU to share his 50-year trajectory on research with current students and researchers.
The presentation started with a prelude of his life background, what values he considered important, some of his previous accomplishments, and how his ideals, work- and life experiences shaped his career. The first part of the presentation focused on his trajectory as an academic, professional, and personal life experiences and reiterated how many years of his life he spent on trying to discover a higher sense of purpose. He shared the beginnings of his journey and how it has been driven by curiosity, which gave him research resilience and insight to explore further questions and the potential solutions to these. His travels around the world, work with the UN, and pursuing various research interests with several different institutions informed his belief that: “People must be the center on whatever you do”.
Following on this principle, Prof. Cassim explained that the sciences should be in service of human health and extrapolated on the design of projects where the utilization of data and technology act as the key drivers for scientific innovation, institutional development, and policymaking. In this regard, he provided a framework for the circulation of knowledge, where technology “drivers” and “test-beds” are currently being utilized in his sustainable and inclusive healthcare research project in Sri Lanka. The framework is being utilized as a model for ageing societies and is driven by private- and public partnerships that can potentially be implemented on a global scale.
To conclude the talk, Prof. Cassim shared valuable advice from his journey as a scientist and university administrator to encourage younger generations to be curious and steadfast in meeting future challenges. In parting, he encouraged the audience in their own research efforts and challenged them to reduce his 50-year journey by forging their own path in 50 months or shorter.

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