Apia, Samoa – Wednesday 19th April, 2023. The successful Samoa Research Conference was hosted by the National University of Samoa in collaboration with Victoria University in Wellington on the 27th and 28th of March 2023. The two-day event brought together scholars and researchers from the two institutions and the University of Otago to discuss and exchange ideas on a wide range of issues critical to Samoa and the Pacific region.
The conference was arranged into thematic sessions, each of which focused on a variety of subjects. The topics covered in the sessions included Health, Employment, Offshore Investments, Education, Open Distance Learning & Assessments, Culture, Law & Politics, STEM areas, Climate Change and Tourism, among others.
One of the highlights of the conference was the keynote address by Professor Markus Melloh- Dean of the Faculty of Health in Victoria University, a prominent academic in the field of health studies. In his speech, Professor Markus highlighted the importance of clinical practice in connection to medical evidence and understanding the new methods of diagnosis and treatment to reduce Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) in Samoa. Other notable key speakers included Dr. Kurt Albermann’s discussion on mental health issues in children and adolescents from integrative, transdisciplinary, and transcultural perspectives; Professor Afamasaga Karoline Afamasaga Fuata’i’s analysis of a four-year trend in national primary diagnostic assessments; Professor Carmen Dalli’s exploration of creating high-quality early childhood environments for children under three; and Professor Neil Dodgson’s reflections on the history and future of computing.
Another significant aspect of the conference was the panel discussions, which featured experts from various fields discussing key issues related to the Pacific region. The panelists addressed topics such as the impact of climate change on Pacific Island communities by Dr. Anita LataiNiusulu; the assessment of the Health of Rural Rivers on Upolu Island using macroinvertebrate analysis presented by NUS Vice Chancellor – Associate Professor Tuifuisa’a Patila Malua Amosa
The National University of Samoa as well as other research topics such as “An Evaluation on the Impact of Training on the Use of Tablets in Primary Schools in Samoa” presented by Professor Muagututi’a Chan Mow (Computing Ed, NUS) to name a few.
Moreover, we also acknowledge the generous contributions of our sponsors – SQA, Tisaan, Comptech and Greenology. Their financial support allowed us to provide attendees with valuable resources and foster networking opportunities. Therefore, we are grateful for their commitment and we anticipate further partnerships in the future.
Overall, the Samoa Research Conference highlights the National University of Samoa’s dedication to promoting research and innovation in the region and its partnerships with leading institutions such as the Victoria University in Wellington and Otago University.