On 15 June 2023, the Asian Institute of Management (AIM) hosted the Asian Development Bank Townhall at the Aboitiz Tech Space to gain insights from AIM scholars and explore the impact of sustainable development through education. Professor Olivier Roche, PhD, Head of the Stephen Zuellig Graduate School of Development Management (SZSDM), opened the event by acknowledging the longstanding and significant relationship between AIM, the Asian Development Bank (ADB), and the Japanese government.
The townhall began with an introduction by Mr. Hiroki Kasahara from the ADB and Professor Motoo Konishi from AIM, both of whom play an integral role in the AIM-ADB relationship. Professor Olivier Roche further emphasized the 35-year partnership between AIM and ADB based on shared values and the belief in empowering human capital. He highlighted their successful collaboration in addressing the pressing global concern of climate change.
During the event, Mr. Hiroki Kasahara expressed his appreciation for ADB’s cooperation with AIM’s scholarship program. He shed light on ADB’s focus on climate finance and efforts to address future disaster risks. Mr. Kasahara emphasized the importance of human capital development in effectively managing investment projects and policy lending. The event also highlighted the opportunities provided by AIM’s Master in Development Management program, emphasizing the philosophy behind the ADB-JSP scholarship which aims to foster graduates’ contributions to the economic and socioeconomic development of their home countries.
Professor Motoo Konishi delivered a thought-provoking speech on how the pandemic, along with other disruptions like the climate crisis and conflicts, has significantly hindered global recovery. He pointed out that the current situation in Ukraine poses a threat to the established global world order not seen since World War II. The COVID-19 pandemic caused fractures in global trade, supply chains, and financial networks. Professor Konishi stressed the urgent need to rebuild global cooperation and rethink globalization to effectively address these challenges.
Discussing the challenges faced by global leaders, Professor Motoo Konishi highlighted the role of multilateral development banks like ADB in providing global funding during crises. He emphasized the necessity of transforming the business models of these banks to tackle transboundary challenges such as climate change, pandemics, fragility, and conflict. Climate change was recognized as the most significant threat to poverty reduction and economic growth. Professor Konishi underscored the importance of assisting countries in designing climate-smart economic development strategies.
ADB’s commitment to climate change and environmental sustainability was a key highlight of the event. President Asakawa’s statement that ADB serves as the climate bank for Asia and the Pacific demonstrated the institution’s dedication to addressing climate change. The discussion also centered around ADB’s strategy for 2030, which focuses on climate change mitigation, building resilience, and enhancing environmental sustainability. It was recognized that green and resilient economies are essential for robust and enduring growth.
The event also featured a panel discussion with three ADB-JSP alumni: Pebbles Sanchez-Ogang, Armi Baticados, and Ashrina Ranjit. These successful graduates from the 2022 cohort of the Master in Development Management program shared their inspiring stories, discussing their decision to pursue development management and the significant impact of the program on their careers. They expressed their gratitude to ADB for providing crucial resources during challenging times and highlighted the support received from their mentor, Professor Hershey Baluyot, and the AIM Career Services Office.
The townhall proceedings at AIM showcased the deep-rooted relationship between AIM and ADB, emphasizing their commitment to empowering human capital and addressing global challenges. The discussions shed light on the impact of the pandemic, climate crisis, and conflicts on the global order; underscoring the crucial role of multilateral development banks in driving sustainable development. The event concluded with the inspiring stories of ADB-JSP alumni, highlighting the transformative power of education and the support provided by the AIM community. By embracing these directional changes, AIM and ADB continue to pave the way for a brighter and more sustainable future.
To stay up to date with the Master in Development Management program and the Asian Development Bank – Japan Scholarship Program you may visit the following websites: