KARACHI:The 5th Deans and Directors Annual Conference, organized by National Business Education Accreditation Council (NBEAC) of Higher Education Commission (HEC), commenced on Monday at Pearl Continental Hotel, Karachi.

The conference was chaired by Chairman NBEAC, Dr. Hasan Sohaib Murad.

Governor Sindh, Mohammad Zubair, graced the conference with his presence as the Chief Guest. Commenting on the conference theme “Creating Impact with CPEC” he said, “The theme is significant in two respects first, it is generating a discussion in the wake of changing landscape of economy and multilateral relationships in the region; and second, it is connecting Business Education with CPEC which will have a long-term impact.” He also added, “The success of CPEC depends very much on the consensus, commitment, continuity and collaboration of all stake holders including political parties, public and private sector organizations, military, civil society, and of course academia.”

Key note speaker, Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed, Chairman HEC, on this occasion said, “Leadership in education, particularly in priority areas is a critical resource that is likely to take other stakeholders in main stream into confidence so that policies can be made functional and executable which have potential to chart socio-economic future of the country.” Other key note speeches that set the tone of the conference were delivered by Mr. Stephen Saaca, Chief Executive Officer of Global Business School Networks, USA, and Dr. Zaki Rashidi, Associate Dean of Management Sciences at IQRA University.

One of the four panel discussions during the first day of the conference revolved around the “Collaboration with Chinese Business Schools” with speakers such as Prof. Dr. Lai Desheng, Dean of Business School Market Beijing Normal University, Prof. Zhiwen Yin, Associate Dean at School of Management in Fudan University, Prof. Frank Y-H Ying, Dean of Department of Business Administration at National Taiwan Normal University, and Dr. Prof. Guo Xuetang, Director of Institute of International Strategy and Policy Analysis SUIBE. The panel discussion was moderated by Dr. Ishrat Husain, currently serving as the Chairman of the Centre for Excellence in Islamic Finance (CEIF) at IBA.

Other plenary sessions addressed topics such as leveraging Karachi for CPEC and shifting roles of business schools in society. Capacity building workshops focused primarily on the matters of Accreditation and Reaccreditation, and meeting the challenges of business schools, department within the context of large universities.

Day one of the conference culminated with a call for papers segment that served as a platform to present original scholarly papers relevant to the theme of the conference.

The conference will conclude on February 6th with some more training sessions, workshops and seminars led by national and international trainers and speakers.