News Releases

UWI Professor named for CHOGM Commonwealth People’s Forum

For Release Upon Receipt - June 18, 2009

St. Augustine

In the lead-up to the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in November 2009, Professor Timothy Shaw, Director of The University of the West Indies (UWI) Institute of International Relations (IIR), has been appointed to the new Advisory Committee for the Commonwealth People’s Forum (CPF).

CHOGM, which is the meeting of the supreme body of the Commonwealth, will be hosted in Port of Spain, Trinidad from November 27th to 29th, 2009. Held every two years, CHOGM brings together Commonwealth leaders to discuss global and Commonwealth issues, to agree upon collective policies and initiatives, to review global, political and economic developments, and to conduct a strategic overview of the Commonwealth's work in support of the interests of member countries.“

I’m proud to be associated with the Summit Office in advancing the CPF here, having been part of the previous pair in Kampala & Malta. The Forum and related People’s Space provide a unique opportunity to showcase the rich diversity of Commonwealth networks, concerns, contributions and possibilities,” said Prof Shaw, who will be the only representative from The UWI in the first meeting of the CPF Advisory Committee (CPF) at the Summit Office in Port of Spain, Trinidad today (Thursday 18th June).

The People’s Space, a component of this year’s CPF programme, is an interactive area with performances and mini-workshops, open to participants and visitors alike. The programme will also include an opening plenary session, workshops on key issues and the CHOGM theme, and field trips. The CPF assembly themes include deepening democracy, environment and climate change, financial crisis, gender, health & HIV/AIDS, HR, peace & conflict.

The CPF, which will take place in the week preceding CHOGM, aims to raise the profile of civil society organisations and to strengthen links between them. It also seeks to create opportunities for dialogue between civil society and government ministers on priority issues in the Commonwealth. Inputs from the CPF are eventually presented to CHOGM at the round table with Foreign Ministers. The CPF is organised by the Commonwealth Foundation, together with civil society and the Government of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago (GORTT). Prof Shaw is engaged as a continuing member of the Civil Society Advisory Committee to the Commonwealth Foundation in London.

For more information, please visit the CHOGM website at, or contact the Institute of International Relations at The University of the West Indies, St Augustine, Trinidad & Tobago at (868) 662 2002 Ext. 2010 or 2011, or visit the IIR website at 


Professor Timothy M. Shaw ( is Director and Professor at the Institute of International Relations, The University of the West Indies, St. Augustine; Professor Emeritus, University of London; Senior Fellow, Centre for International Governance Innovation, Waterloo, Canada; Visiting Professor, Makerere University Business School and Mbarara University of Science and Technology in Uganda; and Visiting Professor, the University of Stellenbosch, South Africa. Previously, Dr. Shaw was professor in the Human Security and Peacebuilding Program at Royal Roads University, professor with the University of London’s Institute of Commonwealth Studies in the United Kingdom, and visiting faculty member at University of Zambia, Ife and Zimbabwe. For three decades, Dr. Shaw was professor of political science and international development at Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia, where he established the undergraduate and post-graduate programs in international development and directed the Centre for Foreign Policy Studies for the Department of National Defence. He continues to serve as member of the Civil Society Advisory Committee to the Commonwealth Foundation and is a member of the Special Advisory Group to the Summit Secretariat in Trinidad for the 2009 Commonwealth heads of government meeting. Dr. Shaw continues to edit two book series: International Political Economy for Palgrave Macmillan and IPE of New Regionalisms for Ashgate Publishing. His latest book is coedited with Andrew F Cooper on The Diplomacies of Small States: between vulnerability & resilience (London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009).


The University of The West Indies (UWI) Institute of International Relations (IIR), which is situated on the UWI St. Augustine Campus in the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, The UWI IIR houses the most comprehensive collection of information resources in the world on the international relations of the Caribbean. The Institute publishes the Journal of Caribbean International Relations, offers excellent research, teaching and consultative assistance to all stakeholders, and organises, sponsors or co-sponsors workshops, conferences and seminars relevant to the international relations challenges of the region. The mission of the Institute is to enhance understanding of Caribbean international relations, applying multidisciplinary perspectives, while contributing to related regional and national human resource development needs. Established in October 1966 by an agreement between the Governments of Trinidad and Tobago and Switzerland, the Institute’s original programmes were a collaborative effort between UWI and the Graduate Institute of International Studies in Geneva. In1972, the IIR adopted a new constitution and began to embrace a regional character, with the governments of Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados, Guyana and Jamaica financing the Institute.


Over the last six decades, The University of the West Indies (UWI) has evolved from a fledgling college in Jamaica with 33 students to a full-fledged University with over 40,000 students. Today, UWI is the largest and most longstanding higher education provider in the English-speaking Caribbean, with main campuses in Barbados, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago, and Centres in Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, The Bahamas, Belize, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Montserrat, St Christopher (St Kitts) & Nevis, St Lucia, and St Vincent & the Grenadines. UWI recently launched its Open Campus, a virtual campus with over 50 physical site locations across the region, serving over 20 countries in the English-speaking Caribbean. UWI is an international university with faculty and students from over 40 countries and collaborative links with over 60 universities around the world. Through its seven Faculties, UWI offers undergraduate and postgraduate degree options in Engineering, Humanities & Education, Law, Medical Sciences, Pure & Applied Sciences, Science and Agriculture, and Social Sciences.