African Climate and Development Initiative, University of Cape Town

Deadline, 4 Sept 2023

Please see for full advert or if the link is stripped by the email server go to or search for “UCT Vacancies”.

President IORG, Prof. Sanjay Chaturvedi, led a discussion on “Climate Terror and Global South: Science, Ethics and Geopolitics” organised by the Research Centre of Yashwantrao Chavan Centre in Mumbai.

President IORG, Prof. Sanjay Chaturvedi, in conversation with International Geographical Union, the IGU’s Commission on Political Geography.

High-Level Strategic Dialogue on IORA’s 25 years – Reflection, Review & Renewal

21 June 2023

The High-Level Strategic Dialogue on IORA’s 25-Years – Reflection, Review & Renewal co-hosted by the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) Secretariat and South Africa is being held at the InterContinental Resort, Balaclava, Republic of Mauritius from 20 to 22 June 2023.

IORA is one of the world’s largest regional groupings, it links 23 Member States to support regional cooperation in the Indian Ocean region.  The Dialogue provides a platform for IORAs 23 Member States, 10 Dialogue Partners, IORA Fisheries Support Unit, IORA Regional Centre for Science and Transfer of Technology, the Indian Ocean Rim Academic Group and the Indian Ocean Rim Business Forum representatives to reflect on IORA’s achievements and future focus.  The dialogue is forward looking, with senior officials able to engage in frank strategic discussions to determine the future direction of the Association to enhance regional cooperation activities in key areas. The strategic objectives of IORA are to promote trade and investment, enhance maritime safety and security, strengthening the blue economy and fisheries management, disaster risk management, facilitate academic, science and technology cooperation, promote tourism and cultural exchanges and women’s economic empowerment.A key interest to both Member States and Dialogue Partners is Indo-Pacific cooperation through IORA, the dialogue will discuss IORA’s Outlook on Indo-Pacific which was adopted in 2022.  This contends that the ‘interconnectedness of the Indian and Pacific Oceans is fundamental to understanding the Indo-Pacific region‘ and notes IORA’s ‘strong interest in ensuring peace, prosperity, economic cooperation, maritime safety and security, and stability for all the peoples of the Indo-Pacific region‘. Member States and Dialogue Partners will discuss concrete actions to take forward the regional cooperation in the Indo-Pacific through IORA. Climate change will be a particular focus for discussion.  Climate Change is a key issue in the Indian Ocean rim region and is of particular concern to IORA’s Small Island Developing States and Least Developed Countries.  During the opening session of the High-Level Strategic Dialogue, H.E Salman Al Farisi, Secretary General of IORA, Professor Sooklal, Ambassador at Large: Asia, BRICS and South Africa’s Focal Point: IORA, the current chair of IORA – Bangladesh and the representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration have delivered their remarks. In his opening remarks Professor Sooklal, Ambassador at Large: Asia, BRICS and South Africa’s Focal Point: IORA emphasized that “26-years ago, this is where the founding Member States of IORA convened to consolidate the vision towards the creation of ‘the concept of an Indian Ocean Rim for socio-economic co-operation…’ in the beautiful island of Mauritius. We are grateful to the Republic of Mauritius for allowing us to grace your outstanding paradise on earth once again to chart a way forward for this august meeting of IORA. The outcomes of this meeting will be a guide towards IORA’s Golden Jubilee in 2047. A lot can happen in 25 years and thus we need to ensure that when we depart this beautiful island of Mauritius at the conclusion of the meeting, we do so knowing that the engagements will contribute to the longevity and prosperity of IORA.” The Secretary-General of IORA, H.E Salman Al Farisi added: “At the end of the meeting, we will develop elements for the Zero draft for “IORA Vision 2030 and Beyond”, which is built from the key takeaways of each session. I am certain that that our Dialogue will certainly be enriching and of great value. This Dialogue is very strategic to strengthen our efforts towards a better IORA which is more forward looking, effective, fits for its purpose, agile and adaptive. I would like to request all of you to take this opportunity to openly share your experiences, knowledge and ideas going forward.”

Keynote Lecture at International Geographical Union

6th June 17,45-18,30 | Martini Hall, U6 Building and on streaming

Prof. Sanjay Chaturvedi delivered a keynote lecture on Re-spatializing the Southern (Global) Ocean: Constructions, Conversations and Contestations.

President IORG, Prof. Sanjay Chaturvedi, delivered a keynote address titled, “Rethinking IR in Anthropocene” at the conference ‘IR Conversations in a World of Uncertainties: Debating Theories and Practices’ organised by University of Dhaka, Bangladesh.

27 Feb, 2023

President IORG, Prof. Sanjay Chaturvedi, spoke at G20 University Connect Engaging Young Minds organised by IIM Calcutta on 30 Jan ’23.

39th Sapru House Lecture on ’25 Years of Indian Ocean Rim Association’

September 30, 2022

Prof. Sanjay Chaturvedi attended the 39th Sapru House Lecture on ‘25 Years of Indian Ocean Rim Association’ where keynote address was delivered by HE Salman Al Farisi, Secretary General of IORA. HE Salman Al Farisi spoke about the functioning of IORA & its objectives to work towards a prosperous, sustainable & peaceful Indian Ocean Region.

Discussion on maritime order and connectivity in the Indian Ocean: The renewed significance of the Bay of Bengal

14th February, 2021

A discussion on the recently released Special Issue of the Journal of the Indian Ocean Region, Vol. 15, Issue 3 titled Maritime Order and Connectivity in the Indian Ocean: The Renewed Significance of the Bay of Bengal was organized at ORF Kolkata on 7 February 2020. The inaugural session was chaired by Nilanjan Ghosh, Director, ORF, Kolkata, and began with an emphasis on the Bay of Bengal (BoB) region as an intersection of various political dynamics and economic forces that requires a comprehensive and holistic understanding. The Guest Editors of the Special Issue of the Journal – Anasua Basu Ray Chaudhury, Senior Fellow, ORF, Kolkata and Rakhahari Chatterji, Advisor, ORF, Kolkata highlighted the critical importance of connectivity in the BoB and adaptation to climate change and the fact that most discussions on geo-politics and geo-economics have often ignored the threats of climate change.

Reiterating the multi-dimensional attributes of the region, Sanjay Chaturvedi, Professor and Dean, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of International Relations, South Asian University, New Delhi stated during his special address that the Indian Ocean can be a very effective and interesting social science laboratory where the vocabulary of the dominant concepts of International Relations theory – order, anarchy, maritime security, sovereignty – can be applied, tested, and argued. The discussion further underlined that matters maritime have garnered new interest which have been comprehensively addressed in the present volume of the journal. Bearing the evolving dynamics of the BoB region, the issue of the journal focused on two salient factors – interests of international, regional and local powers, and the conflict over threats of exploitation of resources.

The keynote address delivered by David Brewster, Senior Research Fellow with the National Security College, Australian National University, Canberra, began with reference to the evolution of the region as a strategic space, as a complex mix of cooperation, conflict and rivalry that also involves non-state actors and non-conventional threats in the region. The address attempted to perceive the region in ‘Strategic Thinking’, in terms of a strategic trend and its impact in the bay, competition in infrastructure building amongst the major actors and the evolving intra-regional dynamics that is marked by challenges emanating from ethnic and religious conflicts and climate change. The argument of imagining BoB region in ‘Strategic Thinking’ set the tone for the next session which was on ‘Connectivity and Bay of Bengal’.

This first session on ‘Connectivity and the Bay of Bengal’ was chaired by Pradeep K. Chatterji Vice Admiral (Retd) who in his opening remarks outlined the vitality of Bay of Bengal not only for India but the rest of the world and that a disruption in the Bay, will have global ramifications. He suggested that a free and open Bay of Bengal and freedom of navigation are essential for peace and prosperity in the region. Chatterji also said that, the Bay is suffering from fault-lines of energy security aspirations of China and Japan and it is important, how do the bay littorals use resources at sea.

Panellists in this session included P.V. Rao, ICSSR, National Fellow, New Delhi; Nitin Agarwala, Captain, Indian Navy; and Pratnashree Basu, Associate Fellow and Sohini Bose, Junior Fellow, ORF Kolkata with G. Padmaja, Former Director, National Maritime Foundation, Vishakhapatnam and current a Research Scholar at Gitam University, Vishakhapatnaman as the discussant.  Discussions in the session looked at development through connectivity through the lens of India’s maritime narrative by enquiring into the ways Bay of Bengal littorals can leverage resources including surface, shore and sub-sea level for their overall development, whether the Bay is regaining its lost importance and the crucial strategic and HADR role that the Andaman and Nicobar islands (ANI) have the potential for playing the BoB region. It was highlighted that the region as a whole has yet to see on ground collaboration for addressing development concerns.

Three primary reasons for the renewed significance for the Bay were pointed out. The first being maritime trade where 66 percent of world’s trade and 35 percent of world’s cargo passes from this region. The second is the non-traditional security threats in the Bay region including impacts of climate change and third being the growing interests of China and its quest for energy security have pushed the littorals to resort to regional cooperation. The strategic advantages of the ANI in terms of enhancing India’s Maritime Domain Awareness and maintaining a forward presence in the Bay were underscored. Given that the Bay is prone to natural disasters such as cyclones and tsunamis, the potential of the Islands for playing a critical role in times of through disaster management and by extending disaster relief responses was discussed.

While connecting the bay has always been one of the major priority areas, the impending threat of climate change and its effects have received scant attention. The second session ‘Adaptation to Climate Change in the Bay of Bengal’ focussed on effects of climate change on the Bay as a whole and especially on the littoral nations and the adaptation strategies which can be applied by policy makers.

The session was chaired by Jayanta Bandhopadhyay, Visiting Distinguished Fellow, ORF, Kolkata and panellists included Simi Mehta, CEO and Editorial Director IMPRI, New Delhi; and Anamitra Anurag Danda, Visiting Senior Fellow, ORF, Kolkata and Sanjay Chaturvedi, Professor and Dean, Faculty of Social Sciences, South Asian University, New Delhi as the discussant. The session began with a grim reminder of large-scale submergence of littoral areas in Bangladesh and India under business as usual scenario. Furthermore, it was highlighted that forced migration due to a multitude of hazards like riverine floods, cyclones during post-monsoon period etc. would become a common occurrence  aggravating crises like ‘messy urbanization’ in vertical and horizontal scales and reduced food grain availability which would further downgrade the littoral nations in the Global Hunger Index. Consequently, the need to take up renewables and form a corpus fund and an additional environmental program to mitigate emerging challenges like agricultural transitions in the region, enabling river water sharing was stressed.

Acknowledging that adaptation was the best suited option for the emerging situation of sea-level rise and submergence in the Sundarbans, a strategy of planned retreat of people from the vulnerable areas for allowing the ecosystem to regenerate while reducing the losses was put forward. As the situation applies for both India and Bangladesh, the need for a multi-party collaborative governance institution that goes beyond sovereign states and includes subnational levels of government, local communities, the independent scientific community, key economic actors, and NGOs was highlighted. Up-scaling or downscaling of policy will have to be carried out for the mitigation of these issues looking at the larger question of sustainability and climate change and reimagining the trajectory of development in the global south.

Both the panels on Connectivity and Climate Change highlighted that the way out lies in developing methods of mitigation and adaptation. One has to be far sighted when talking about connectivity and climate change issues in the context of the Bay of Bengal. It is vital to look beyond traditional indigenous knowledge in dealing with these global “irregular” events since these events are relatively new, and knowledge systems have to evolve in dealing with them. In conclusion, the day long discussion noted that ‘development’ per se is a flow process and is not a stock of events and that BoB region should strive to find ways in which contemporary challenges can be turned into opportunities for all the stakeholders.