ISLAMABAD: Tariq Banuri has taken the charge as Chairperson of the Higher Education Commission (HEC).
Banuri in his maiden address to HEC employees vowed to execute HEC’s vision and serve academia by empowering universities. He stressed the need for identifying the key issues, setting targets for the next four years and brainstorming on how the HEC procedural deficiencies can be addressed. “HEC has to play a supportive role for higher education institutions, faculty and students at large, as it is a service organisation meant to facilitate all stakeholders,” he said.
The chairperson said that HEC has to go beyond numbers towards quality of higher education and safeguarding the rights of academia. Banuri said that trainings will be held for HEC employees from time to time for their capacity building so that they may improve their potential and work smarter. “HEC will invest in its employees ensuring that every individual sees their potential growing with the passage of time,” he pledged.
Dr Tariq Banuri is a PhD from Harvard University and joined HEC as its fourth chairperson. He has extensive experience of working in academia, civil society and national as well as international organisations. He was the member of Steering Committee on Higher Education Reforms, the body that played a vital role in inception of HEC in 2002. He has also worked as Professor of Economics at University of Utah, USA.
The new Chairman holds PhD degree in Economics. He did his Bachelors in Civil Engineering from University of Peshawar and Masters in Development Economics from Williams College. He started his career through Civil Services of Pakistan. However, after five years, he left to pursue PhD in Harvard University and joined the United Nations University World Institute for Development Economics Research (WIDER), United Nations as a research fellow.
Dr. Banuri has also served as founding Executive Director, Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI), Pakistan. He has also remained member of the Board of Governors, State Bank of Pakistan and worked as Coordinating Lead Author on the Nobel Prize winning Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Moreover, he has been providing free consultative services to Pakistan government in the area of climate change and to Mehran University in the area of water.