Pacific Islands Universities Research Network
Status of initiative: On track
Description/achievement of initiative

Our objective is to enhance research, innovation and collaboration to better serve the needs and aspirations of Pacific communities. We will meet this object, and hence contribute to the sustainable development of SIDS by pursuing the following goals:GoalsValidate and generate knowledge through research and publication on priority challenges in the Pacific region;Share physical and intellectual resources, in an equitable manner, to facilitate quality research;Develop shared research training initiatives;Collectively work with regional and international organizations to strengthen the quantity and quality of research conducted in fields of major importance;Strengthen research content in the curriculum and in teaching, with a focus on strengthening the postgraduate training and enhancing joint degrees at the Masters and PhD levels;Protect and apply local and indigenous knowledge systems;Provide Science, Technology & Innovation (ST&I) policy advice at the regional and national levels; andUse the knowledge generated through research for the well-being of the Pacific Island communities.

Implementation methodologies

By collaborating in the following activities:Collect and provide essential data on research in the region. Mapping or inventory or auditing of institutional research capacity;Share or exchange standards, policies and information about academic (research and postgraduate training) programs; store research-related policy documentation and resources (such as postgraduate policies of each member university, ethics-related policies, research permits requirements of Pacific island countries );Foster research student and staff exchanges; Hold a PIURN Annual/Biennial Conference, during which training courses, seminars, workshops, and awards for research can also be held concurrently;Support grant applications and resource mobilization; Support and disseminate research outcomes, andFacilitate the establishment of a regional research council.

Arrangements for Capacity-Building and Technology Transfer

A key area is in the development of research skills in graduates from all member universities.Hence, a major initiative is to implement the Research Skills Development (RSD) Framework in all member universities. The RSD Framework was developed by the University of Adelaide in 2007. The University of the South Pacific adopted the RSDF in 2013. PIURN plans to implement the RSDF in all member universities from 2015 with the help of the University of Adelaide and USP.

Coordination mechanisms/governance structure

A meeting of Vice-Chancellors/Presidents and senior level representatives of interested universities and stakeholders was held at the University of the South Pacific, Suva, Fiji, between November 5 - 7, 2012, to discuss the formation of a network of universities from the Pacific Island countries and territories to support intra- and inter- regional knowledge creation and sharing. On 10th of July 2013, the Vice-Chancellors/Presidents of eleven (11) Pacific Islands universities established the Pacific Islands Universities Research Network (PIURN). It is governed by a Memorandum of Cooperation between the partners. It has a Secretariat which is currently based at the University of the South Pacific. The daily activities of PIURN is managed by the Director of the PIURN Secretariat.


Fiji National University; National University of Samoa; Pacific Adventist University; PNG University of Natural Resources and Environment; PNG University of Technology; The University of the South Pacific; University of Fiji; University of French Polynesia; University of New Caledonia; University of Papua New Guinea;
Implementation of RSD in first 3 PIURN universities
Implementation of RSD in next 3 PIURN universities
Implementation of RSD in last 4 PIURN universities
Resources devoted to implementation
In-kind contribution
Equipment such as laptops and tablets
Financing (in USD)
Staff / Technical expertise
Provided by University of Adelaide and USP
Progress reports
Cut off date each year: 1 July
This initiative fulfils the SMART criteria.
Date of completion: July 1, 2018
Operating in countries
Contact information/focal point(s)
Dr Jito Vanualailai, vanualailai@usp.ac.fj

Copyright 2017 United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs