University of Nottingham Professor Juliet Thondhlana, a Zimbabwean has been appointed to a top influential position at the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).

Her research interests are in the following areas: higher education, language, employability and migration; internationalisation of higher education; migration and slavery nexus; and intercultural communication.

University of Nottingham’s pro-vice chancellor Professor Todd Landman said Prof Thondhlana’s appointment recognizes her leadership and expertise in the field of international education.

“The announcement of the new Unesco chair for Professor Thondhlana represents an incredible triumph that recognises her leadership and expertise in the area of international education and development,” said Prof Landman.

Apparently, according to information on its website, UNESCO is the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization which seeks to build peace through international cooperation in Education, the Sciences and Culture.

UNESCO’s Constitution was adopted in London in 1945, it entered into force in 1946.

After two world wars in less than thirty years, UNESCO was born of a clear vision: to achieve lasting peace, economic and political agreements among states are not enough it sought to bring people together and strengthen the intellectual and moral solidarity of humankind, through mutual understanding and dialogue between cultures.

Over the years, UNESCO has launched pioneering programmes to achieve this.

UNESCO mobilized philosophers, artists, intellectuals from every nation.

From the very beginning it debunked racist theories and we developed innovative projects that changed the world:

The Universal Copyright Convention (1952)
Man and the Biosphere programme (1971)
World heritage Convention (1972)
Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage (2003).

UNESCO gave rise to global centres of scientific research, from CERN (1952) to SESAME (2017), and developed a global tsunami early warning system.

UNESCO brought together experts and scholars to write the first ever general history of Africa and all five continents.

UNESCO carried out literacy campaigns that spearheaded the development of nations, in Italy… in the Republic of Korea… in Afghanistan.

UNESCO also established universal principles for scientific ethics and the human genome, and protected the best that humanity has to offer: the temples of ancient Egypt…. saved from rising waters; The treasures of Venice….and Angkor; The old Bridge of Mostar… rebuilt after war.