JICA Chair Program 2023/24: Session on Sri Lanka-Japan Relationship and the Making of Modern Japan
The JICA Chair Program 2023/24 at the University of Colombo hosted its fifth session, titled ‘Sri Lanka-Japan Relationship and the Making of Modern Japan,’ at the Faculty of Management & Finance Auditorium on December 12th, 2023. The event was graced by the Special Advisor of JICA, Dr. Shinichi Kitaoka, and esteemed personnel from JICA, including the Acting Vice Chancellor of the University of Colombo, Professor N. S. Punchihewa, and the Dean of the Faculty of Management & Finance, Professor H. M. Nihal Hennayake, along with staff members and students of the JICA Chair Program 2023/24.
Professor Hennayake delivered the welcome address, while the Vice Chancellor, Senior Professor (Chair) H.D. Karunaratne, shared his message online. Deputy Ambassador of Japan to Sri Lanka, Kotaro Katsuki, expressed his insights on fostering international relations. He emphasized the significance of collaboration and knowledge exchange between Sri Lanka and Japan.
The program’s highlight was an enlightening lecture by Dr Kitaoka, the former president of JICA. His discourse explored themes of self-respect, independence of mind, and statesmanship, captivating the audience with profound insights. Students actively participated in a dynamic Q&A session, posing thoughtful questions and engaging in an intellectual exchange with Dr Kitaoka. Additionally, Dr Kitaoka presented two books authored by himself, titled ‘Self Respect & Independence of Mind’ and ‘Statesman of Vision,’ to the Vice Chancellor and the Director of the International Office, Professor Sashika Manoratne.
To formally conclude the event, Professor Manoratne delivered the Vote of Thanks, expressing gratitude to all participants for their contributions to the JICA Chair Program 2023/24. The closing remarks extended warm wishes for continued collaboration and knowledge-sharing between Sri Lanka and Japan.
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