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A0 …… My USP Chronicles

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The current generation of USP academics and students may see some lessons in what the pioneering generations of USP academics and students went through (as seen through my personal experiences), when staff and students in general displayed great creativity despite the poverty of physical resources. Some issues debated twenty five years ago, are still current, such as the threat to small but necessary programs such as Fijian and Hindi vernaculars, history, politics and sociology- which job-oriented students and scholarship givers avoid.  palgrave-bookThere are new themes such as the wielding of unfettered power by management and inability to use donor funds. But academic creativity continues:

“Happiest day of my academic life” (30 April 2016): my Palgrave Macmillan book to the right.

Read also (at the bottom of this page) the inspiring 1946 poem by Poet Laureate John Masefield “A university, splendid, beautiful and enduring”.

“Privatizing FEA: if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” (FT 29/10/2016)

“Accounting stalwart Professor Mick White passes on” (9th Oct. 2016)

“Ratu Joni Madraiwiwi: on launching the Voter Education Kits in 2005” (13 Oct. 2016)

“Ratu Joni Madraiwiwi: a national treasure set aside” (6 Oct. 2016)

“More revelations and questions on the MWH fiasco” (27 Sep. 2016)

“Bainimarama Government and MWH: coming to their senses?” (24 Sep 2016)

Continuing distractions to hide corruption under the carpet (

“Madraiwiwi launch of Just Wages in Fiji for ECREA”

“A Eulogy for Dr Ropate Qalo: a free spirit” (Fiji Times, 9 April 2016) (with additional words from USP, Dr Satendra Prasad and Seona Smiles)


“My USP Golden Years 2006 to 2012: constructive engagement with Government”

“Pacific athletics, Australia/NZ and PACER negotiations” (ABC Pacific Beat, 22 August 2016)

“Fiji’s real medal position at Rio Olympics”

(a break from USP)
“Selective justice in Fiji” (ABC Pacific Beat 19 Aug. 2016)

(a break from USP)
“Fiji Sevens joyous imperialist ironies at Rio” (FT, 20/8/2016)

“Chandra trumped by Tarr for VC job in 2004 but back again in 2008”

“Helping the Fiji Elections Office with Voter Education in 2005”

“The Woes of the USP ELMS Project: 2003-2004”

“A David and Goliath Story from USP in the 1990s”

“USP not a peace-building institution in 2000?”

“DPD again in 2000, under Siwatibau, but lasted only a week”

“DPD 4     The  BioConservation Network Project at USP: out of my legal depth”

“DPD  3      Contributing to physical facilities at USP: Marine Studies and AusAID Lecture Theater”

“DPD 2:  The declining quality of students, staff and departmental assessments at USP” (1995)

“Issues in the financing of USP” (Australian IDP, 1993)

“DPD 1   DPD (USP) saving science from Chandra’s EFTS financing model”

“USP academics in the 1980s political storms”

“Victimisation of some USP staff: changing rules, ex post, 1986”

“Fiji academics at USP attacked viciously, 1985 to 1986”

“No justice for student Kamlesh Prakash” 1986

“USP History/Politics with no place for Dakuvula and Sanday, in 1986”

“Spurning Amartya Sen and getting Bob Marley in 1976” 

“YWCA 1975 Submission to Fiji Government on need for Counter-Inflation Legislation” (22 July 2016)

“Warden Wadan and early USP (1974)” (22 July 2016)

“1975 YWCA/USPSA/SCM Submission on Parliamentary Emoluments” (21 July 2016)

“1975 WYCA/USP Group submission to the Streets Electoral Commission” (21 July 2016)

“The 1973 YWCA and USP Radicalism and Research” (21 July 2016)

“A tribute to Professor Theodore MacDonald (1933-2011)” (20 July 2016).

“1973 USP students: in a class of their own”  (20 July 2016)


A Poem by John Masefield, Poet Laureate
[at the installation of the Chancellor of the University of Sheffield, 25 June 1946]


“…There are few earthly things more splendid than a university.
In these days of broken frontiers and collapsing values,

when the dams are down and the floods are making misery,
when every ancient foothold has become something of a quagmire,
wherever a university stands, it stands and shines;
wherever it exists, the free minds of men, urged on to full and fair enquiry,
may still bring wisdom into human affairs.

There are few earthly things more beautiful than a university.
It is a place where those who hate ignorance may strive to know,

where those who perceive truth may strive to make others see;
where seekers and learners alike, banded together in the search for knowledge,
will honour thought in all its finer ways,  will welcome thinkers in distress or in exile,
will uphold ever the dignity of thought and learning
and will exact standards in these things.
They give to the young in their impressionable years,
the bond of a lofty purpose shared,
of a great corporate life  whose links will not be loosed until they die.
They give young people that close companionship for which youth longs,
and that chance of the endless discussion of the themes which are endless,
without which youth would seem a waste of time.

There are few things more enduring than a university.
Religions may split into sect or heresy;

dynasties may perish or be supplanted,
but for century after century the university will continue,
and the stream of life will pass through it,
and the thinker and the seeker will be bound together
in the undying cause of bringing thought into the world.

To be a member of one of these great societies must ever be a glad distinction…”

This poem was used by the University of Pittsburgh (USA) for one of its annual reports:

In the pipeline: a few books

(a) 4 Volumes of my community education articles from 1984 to 2016:

Volume 1       Growing the economy
Volume 2       Public Policy: a Fair Go for All
Volume 3       Social Issues
Volume 4       Politics, governance and electoral systems

(b)    A collection of my academic articles on poverty, gender inequalities in income and employment, food security, (most based on household surveys by Pacific Island countries), and regional trade agreements .

(c)   A few monographs from long articles in older journals not available on the Internet.


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