The Ateneo de Manila University joined the Virtual Institute academic network today, bringing the number of core member universities to 53.
Interest in Vi membership began in 2012, when Ateneo lecturer, Philip Arnold Tuaño, took part in the first edition of the Vi online course on trade and poverty. Discussions gathered momentum during the December 2014 Vi workshop on trade and poverty held in Manila last December, which was attended by Marissa Maricosa Paderon, an assistant professor and director of the university's European Studies Programme. Paderon was the driving force behind getting her university to become the first Vi member in the country.
The Vi will cooperate with the Department of Economics of Ateneo's School of Social Sciences. The department aims to produce economists and leaders who make sound analyses of socio-economic phenomena, and contribute to public policy and nation-building while grounded on social justice and the service of others. During the more than 60 years of the department's existence, its graduates have assumed important posts in both public and private sectors of the country.
It offers a full range of academic programmes in economics, including Bachelor's, Master's and PhD degrees. These programmes feature many courses related to trade and development, such as international economics, development economics, international monetary economics, economics of multinational enterprises, economics of agricultural development, economics of natural resources and environment, economics of technology and technological change, and transportation economics.
Faculty members are involved in research on trade policy, international financial flows, international migration, regional economics, environmental economics, and monetary and exchange rate policy.
Paderon will serve as Vi coordinator at the university. She holds a PhD in Economics and teaches course in international economics, agrarian reform and taxation and economic research. Some of her recent publications relate to trade liberalization and trade performance in Asia, the effects of a tariff reform program, regional economic integration and the Philipppines, and trade liberalization and agricultural policy. She will receive support from Tuaño, responsible for courses in development economics and theory and practice of social development, and a researcher focusing on social development and poverty reduction.
The university is interested in contributing to joint research and training seminars on trade and development issues with other universities in the Southeast Asia region and other developing countries. It can also help facilitate exchanges with other faculty members and graduate students with interest in the Philippines and other regional blocs.
They expect that Vi membership will allow them to benefit from increased cooperation and information, as well as training on trade policies and related development issues, especially with universities and training institutions also located in other developing countries.
For more information, visit the university profile on the Vi website.