Prof. Franco Gandolfi, dean of Canadian University Dubai, advises the government on obtaining foreign aid
Dubai, April 18, 2017: Canadian University Dubai’s (CUD) Dean of Faculty of Management and School of Business Administration, Prof. Franco Gandolfi, was recently invited to act as a strategic advisor to the South Pacific nation of Kiribati to help them obtain financial aid from donors and development partners.
In addition, Prof. Franco also conducted a week of intensive workshops on strategic planning and foresight for mid-level and senior-level public servants across all 12 of the government’s ministries.
Prof. Franco, who first worked with the island nation when he was Dean of the Faculty of Business & Economics at the University of the South Pacific, Fiji Islands, spent two weeks in Kiribati serving as a technical advisor to its government during its negotiations for ongoing funding for its strategic plan and the Kiribati Development Project (2016 - 2020) with its key stakeholders, including World Bank, International Monetary Fund (IMF), Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the United Nations, as well as the Governments of Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Singapore, and Taiwan.
His visit culminated with a dinner banquet hosted by the President of Kiribati, H.E. Taneti Maamau and the First Lady, Madam Teiraeng Maamau, where the Canadian University Dubai was officially recognized.
“The Government of Kiribati is focused on attracting investment and building the infrastructure it needs to optimize the potential of its fishing and tourism industries,” said Prof. Franco. “However, as a nation of only 100,000 people who have primarily lived a traditional Micronesian way of life, they are eager to seek advice and guidance from international business leaders and academics who can assist them in capacity building and securing on-going funding for its ambitious strategic plans, which is why I’m glad to help.”
The Republic of Kiribati, formerly known as the Gilbert Islands when it was governed by the United Kingdom, is a democratic nation comprising 34 islands with a total land area of 800 sq. km. spread over 3.5 million sq. km. of water. Its main industries are Copra (products made from coconuts) and fishing. To date its economy has relied heavily on international development assistance programs, fishing licenses and tourism.
“I am deeply humbled and honored by the opportunity to act as a strategic advisor to the Government of Kiribati and grateful for the opportunity to represent CUD at the highest political level by assisting the government to secure funding for its strategic plan and provide workshops to engage in capacity building for its senior level public servants across all ministries,” said Prof. Franco. “It is my hope that this will be the starting point for future collaborations between CUD and this wonderful Pacific Island nation”.