The Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) in Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) hosted the fourth Brunei-Malaysia Forum from September 14 to 15. The forum took place entirely online.
The theme of the forum was "Trans-Asian Networks: Continuity & Change."
Opening remarks were given by the Dean of FASS UBD, Associate Professor Dr. Hj. Noor Azam bin OKMB Hj Othman and the Dean of FASS at University of Malaya (UM), Datuk Professor Dr. Danny Wong Tze Ken.
Associate Professor Dr Abby Tan Chee Hong, Assistant Vice Chancellor (Research) at UBD officiated the opening ceremony, which was also attended by the deans and directors of the faculties, institutes, centres, and offices at UBD.
Associate Professor Dr. Gary Jones delivered a keynote speech titled, "The Future of the Past: 35 years of UBD-UM bilateral relations". AP Dr Gary Jones recently retired from full time employment at UBD in 2021, having been with the university since its inception in 1985.
The keynote covered Brunei Darussalam and UBD's changing relationship with Malaysia and Universiti Malaya in particular. Collaborations, including two major conferences on bilingualism, "have had real impact on how English language teaching has changed in Brunei's education system." AP Dr Gary also offered some insights into what direction future trends might take.
54 papers were presented across 16 panels spread out over the two days of the bilingual forum. Panel sessions included topics concerning 'Contemporary Brunei', 'The Malay World', 'Youth and Social Issues', 'Environments and Transformation', 'Pandemic', 'Islam, Media and Tourism', 'Brunei History', and 'English/Language Teaching' among others.
The event was also attended by researchers and educators from UM, Brunei Government ministries, other Higher Education Institutions and schools.
The first BMF was held in 2014 in UM in collaboration with FASS, Universiti Brunei Darussalam. It was attended by scholars and graduate students from UBD and UM. A significant number of papers from UBD were presented in the first BMF. All the papers were published in a proceeding. It was decided that BMF would be held biennially at UBD and UM by rotation.
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