Islamabad: The Centre for Strategic and Contemporary Research (CSCR) and Department of Defense and Strategic Studies, Quaid-i-Azam University (QAU) organized an interactive seminar on the title of “The Asian Century: Schema of Grandiosity?” on Tuesday. Dr. Talat Farooq, Senior Consultant, Islamabad Policy Research Institute, Islamabad; Dr. Ilhan Niaz, Associate Professor, Department of History, QAU; Dr. Farhan Hanif Siddiqi, Associate Professor, School of Politics and International Relations, QAU; and Mr. Waqas Saleem, Lecturer, Department of Anthropology, QAU were the key speakers at the seminar. Dr Shabana Fayyaz, Chairperson of the Defence and Strategic Studies Department, QAU moderated the interactive seminar.
Dr Ilhan gave a presentation on the theme “Culture of Power, Governance and Domination in a possible Asianised World.” He pointed out an alarmist perspective and sketched parameters beyond the Asian century. Dr Talat while speaking on the theme “Pakistan’s Place in the Asian Century: Choices and Way Forward” touched upon the academic debate and emphasised that we need to seek strength from within to formulate and implement an independent foreign policy.
Dr Farhan highlighted a political governance model based on technocracy and meritocracy. This is the Asian model, he said. Populism is contributing to the liberal conceptions of democracy, he added. Dr Farhan was speaking on the theme “State and Identity: Comparative Politics of the Asian Century.” Mr Waqas gave a presentation on the theme “Asian Ideals of Development: The Anthropology of Change.” He said the Asiatic systems provide a base for imagining alternative development models. Latecomers (with reference to industrialisation) have to build their own notions of development; he added.
The presentations were followed by a Question Answer session. People from different walks of life, faculty members and students from QAU attended the event. Dr Nazir Hussain, Director and Professor at School of Politics and International Relations, QAU, gave the closing remarks on behalf of the university vice chancellor. He appreciated Centre for Strategic and Contemporary Research for organising a seminar on such an important theme. He also suggested arranging another seminar on the technocratic model of Pakistan.
In the end, Dr Nazir and CSCR Executive Director Mr. Anas Abdullah presented shields and souvenirs to the speakers and moderator.