The Words of the Pople Family

PWPA Expands

Joy Pople
November 29, 1980

Now expanding worldwide, PWPA is envisioned as the permanent structure that will guide the ICUS and recommend professors to attend the annual conferences, as well as a body that will sponsor research and conferences that point the direction towards true world peace.

According to its official literature, the purpose of PWPA is "to provide an organizational vehicle for the efforts of the academic community to advance the cause of peace. The PWPA is a unique scholarly institution composed, on an international and interdisciplinary basis, of scientists and scholars who perceive the crisis of modern civilization. Aiming at the formation of new ideas of civilization, the PWPA conducts various research and educational activities in order to help solve the problems facing us today and to contribute to the promotion of the welfare of communities, nations and the world."

PWPA activities have four major emphases:

Scholarly: promoting free academic exchange and inquiry in the pursuit of knowledge.

International: promoting global perspectives, approaches and cooperation in the pursuit of peace.

Interdisciplinary: focusing on specific societal problems transcending the boundaries of a single academic field.

Future-oriented: emphasizing: the search for ways to grasp and improve the present state of affairs, from a future perspective.

Initially formed in Seoul, Korea on May 6, 1973, under the guidance of Reverend Sun Myung Moon, PWPA has carried out many activities in the Far East. Recently, eminent scholars and professors in Europe and the United States have established national PWPAs based on the Asian models. African scholars are now planning for two PWPAs in Africa.

PWPA gives scholars and professors the opportunity to meet on a year-round basis, on a national or regional level, to carry out the objectives of ICUS. The yearly ICUS provides the setting where representatives of national PWPAs can meet to hear reports and exchange ideas. Participants in this year's ICUS were invited to attend the PWPA meeting and encouraged to join their local PWPA or, if none exists, sign up as associate members of the PWPA in the United States.

Rev. Chung Hwan Kwak, international coordinator of the various PWPAs, opened the meeting on November 29 with an address on the subject of peace. Following this, local reports were given.

In Korea, interchanges between Japanese and Korean professors to discuss common concerns began in 1971. The first international conference was held in 1974, with the theme of "World Peace and Asia," and was attended by scholars from Japan, the Republic of China and the Republic of Korea.

The Korean PWPA publishes a monthly journal, Forum. Its editorial contents include peace studies and discussions of values. Seminars are conducted by the academy staff, relating to problems of national development. Group studies have focused on the Korean people's views of value systems and conditions for survival in the 21st century. PWPA leaders hope to mobilize brain power, a resource Korea has in abundance. Present Korean PWPA membership is approximately 500 university professors.

The Japanese PWPA was founded in 1974. Regional conferences throughout the country began in 1975, and the academy was soon recognized as a national scholars' movement. PWPA carried out a three-year project of research on national goals in Japan, with the results published as a book in 1978. Emphasis is placed on research activities to offer actual solutions to current problems in Japanese society. PWPA publishes various monthly and quarterly magazines as well as occasional monographs. Local meetings have been held in 21 cities throughout Japan, and present membership numbers over 2,000. It has achieved recognition as a prestigious academic society. The Japanese PWPA seeks to promote nationalism (in the true sense of the word, not in the deviated meaning), internationalism, interdisciplinary studies (felt as the academy's unique contribution to the Japanese academic community) and academic freedom.

In Europe, five interdisciplinary workshops have been held, modeled on the ICUS. PWPA was founded in 1979 in Germany and Italy and in 1980 in France. In England and Scandinavia, PWPA is in the process of establishment. European PWPA workshops and conferences have dealt with the contribution of modern art, the relationship between the academic world and the media, the future of child education, youth attacks on values, youth and unemployment, media and youth, accuracy and responsibility in news media reporting, and the future of the family. The European PWPAs aim to organize further multidisciplinary studies in areas of international concern and publish significant proceedings.

The American PWPA membership is open to people of other countries where no local PWPA has yet been established. American PWPA leaders see their mission as promoting peace. The main thrust of their efforts attempts to get parties who are in conflict to meet together and try to work out some satisfactory solution to their problems. The PWPA is also interested in proposing foreign policy direction in the 80s, projecting current policies. It is open to new members and welcomes suggestions for future topics of study. 

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