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Institute of Sustainable Education celebrates Professor Ilga Salīte’s jubilee

They who don't perform, talk.
They who can't perform, criticise.
They who do perform, keep silent
And let their work do the talking.

~Popular wisdom~

 

In the course of her academic career, Professor Ilga Salīte has displayed outstanding achievement in science. Her invaluable contribution to the researching and advancement of teacher education and education for sustainable development both in Latvia and abroad has long gained global recognition.

For seventh year running Professor Salīte presides over Baltic and Black Sea Circle Consortium in Educational Research (BBCC). This network continues to acquire and develop a worldwide reputation of excellence, to a great extent, owing to Professor Salīte's inspirational leadership, vision and ambition which never cease to attract new members to the consortium, build new partnerships, initiate the running of joint projects and collaborative organisation of scientific conferences.

Professor Salīte is actively involved in the organisation of the annual, travelling, international scientific conference "Sustainable Development. Culture. Education" of the Journal of Teacher Education for Sustainability (JTEFS) and BBCC. In 2009 this forum returned to Daugavpils - the place of its inception seven years earlier; 2010 is remembered by many as the pinnacle of the first decade of the conference - remarkable for the fact of its being held in UNESCO Headquarters in Paris. On both these landmark occasions Professor Salīte chaired the conference steering committee and her expert guidance proved invaluable in addressing the multiple organisational challenges.

Professor Salīte is a renowned authority in the sphere of scientific publication as evidenced in her being a distinguished editorial board member of several prominent editions. Among others, the list includes JTEFS journal which is covered by a number of international databases (most notably, SCOPUS, CABI, ERA). Professor Salīte has been ever-present on the Journal's editorial board ever since its foundation in 2002 (prior to 2007 the Journal was published under the title Journal of Teacher Education and Training). The eleven issues of the Journal have featured five articles by Professor Salīte (including three with co-authors) on the subject of teacher education and sustainable education. Moreover, Professor Salīte has spearheaded the publication of an international collection of scientific articles on sustainable development and education and worked on the editorial boards of both its volumes (2006 and 2007). What is more, she initiated the establishment of a new scientific journal Discourse and Communication for Sustainable Education in 2010 and, for the third year running, is actively involved in its editorial board.

Additionally, Professor Salīte is an eminent member of several other editorial boards:

  • Collected articles of Latvia University of Agriculture
  • Collected articles of Seville University
  • Journal of Research & Reflections in Education, University of Education, Lahore, Pakistan
  • Proceedings of the 6th international conference "Person. Color. Nature. Music"

Professor Salīte has acquired extensive experience of participation in and coordination of different global and Latvian scientific projects:

  • "Reorientation of teacher education to address sustainability. Putting teacher education guidelines into practice" (2nd phase, 2006-2010)
  • ENERCE (European Network for Excellence on Citizenship Education) (since 2006)
  • "ISE: Building the capacity for international partnership, research and learning on ESD" (2008-2009)
  • "Teacher education for the future: PCC (Pacific Circle Consortium in Educational Research) collaborative research and education for sustainable development: problems and perspectives at the beginning of UNO decade 2005-2014, in cooperation with USA, Korea, Fiji and New Zealand" (2004-2009)
  • ESF project "Support to the implementation of doctoral studies at Daugavpils University" (2009-2013)

Professor Salīte is a member of various associations and consortia on both international and local levels:

  • BBCC (Baltic & Black sea Circle Consortium in educational research) president since 2005
  • WISE (World Innovation Summit for Education) since 2005
  • ENERCE (European Network for Excellence on Citizenship Education) since 2009
  • AIAER (All India Association for Educational Research) since 2005
  • DU Council of Science
  • DU Council of Doctoral Studies
  • DU Professors' Council in Pedagogy
  • DU Promotion Council in Pedagogy
  • DU Doctoral Study Programme "Pedagogy" Council
  • DU Council of Studies
  • Promotion Council of Liepāja University

Since 2009 Professor Salīte represents ISE at the annual World Innovation Summit for Education (WISE) in Doha (Qatar), where an ongoing effort unfolds to seek new and strengthen existing ties and partnerships towards innovation in education that would push disciplinary boundaries.

A landmark occasion in Professor Salīte's recent academic career was 31 March - 2 April 2009 when she participated in UNESCO World Conference on Education for Sustainable Development in Bonn, Germany. This milestone event celebrated the success of Europe and North America in implementing the first half of UNO Decade of Education for Sustainable Development. The achievement of ISE, which owes much to the tireless and inspired work of Professor Salīte, earned a high appreciation and was rated as one of the top five experiences across Europe and North America. [http://www.esd-world-conference-2009.org].

In November 2012 professor Salīte represented Daugavpils University and ISE in the global conference The power of ESD: Exploring evidence and promise held in Visby, Sweden. Participation in this worldwide forum served to expand the international outreach of ISE and planted the seeds for future collaboration since the Institute was invited to become a partner of Swedish International Centre of Educational for Sustainable Development (SWEDESD) and start promising collaboration within Global Action Plan International (GAPI), Baltic University Programme (BUP), the Nordic Alliance for Sustainability (ANDEP) and other initiatives.

The end of 2012 marks another crowning achievement of Professor Salīte's long-term contribution to the elaboration of sustainable education theory and its translation into higher education practice - the establishment of a UNESCO Chair at the Institute of Sustainable Education (Faculty of Education and Management of Daugavpils University). It is a hallmark of recognition for Professor Salīte's life's work and a huge step towards the goal of UNESCO/UNITWIN global project on the reorientation of teacher education to address sustainability. Such official acknowledgement will certainly serve to inspire and support further activities and initiatives in this direction.

On this memorable day, we extend sincerest and most heartfelt congratulations to our beloved Professor Ilga Salīte on her special birthday! We wish her many happy returns of the day and a lot of strength to ceaselessly pursue her ambitions. May the joy and love that emanate from all her selfless endeavours and projects sustain us here at Daugavpils University as well as her many friends and colleagues across the globe for many years to come!

Let your work speak for you!


Affectionately yours,
ISE team