Wednesday, 17 December 2008 11:41 AM

Solomon Islander Graduates with PhD

A Solomon Islander has successfully completed his doctoral studies at the University of East Anglia in Norwich, England.

Dr. Gordon Leua Nanau was admitted to the Doctor of Philosophy PhD in international development, joining an increasing number of Solomon Islanders with doctoral qualifications.

In a note circulated to the staff and students of the School of Development Studies at the University of East Anglia, Professor Arjan Verschoor, who supervised Dr. Nanau's studies, announced the successful defense of his thesis and said the examiners very much enjoyed reading Nanau's thoughtful, insightful and well-written thesis.

Dr. Nanau in thanking those who assisted him in his scholarly journey said it was a "satisfying feeling" and a "humbling experience".

He said credits are due to his wife and children, the Commonwealth Scholarship Office, SICHE and the Solomon Islands National Training Committee who all made it possible for him to achieve this dream.

He also thanked the communities in Solomon Islands who hosted him during his months of field work.

Meanwhile, congratulatory messages for Dr Nanau began coming in from friends and relatives around the world.

Emeritus Professor Murray Chapman, from the University of Hawai'i, said Dr Nanau's achievement is a marvelous conclusion to a long and creditable scholarly journey of which all Solomon Islanders should feel proud.

Professor Chapman has had more than four decades of interactions with the Solomon Islands and is a mentor for many Solomon Islanders pursuing higher educational qualifications.

Dr. Nanau did his undergraduate studies at the University of the South Pacific (USP) in Fiji and the College of Charleston, South Carolina, United States of America. He also graduated with a Post Graduate Diploma in Development Studies (PGDDS) and a research based MA (with distinction) at USP.

His academic background revolves around political science/governance, public administration/management and international development.

Before embarking on PhD studies at the University of East Anglia, he was with the Solomon Islands Public Service (1996-1998) dealing mainly with provincial government issues. More recently (1998-2005), Dr. Nanau was the Head of Research and Planning at the Solomon Islands College of Higher Education (SICHE) in Honiara, the country's tertiary institution. His research interests are in governance reforms, civil uprisings and peace making, land and natural resource exploitation, local knowledge, rural livelihoods and globalisation.

Dr. Nanau and his family will return to Solomon Islands soon, where he hopes to continue working for SICHE.

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