Professor Jes Sammut from the UNSW Aquaculture Research Group and Professor Greg Leslie, Director of the UNSW Global Water Institute recently travelled to Timor-Leste to identify opportunities for UNSW to support sustainable aquaculture development in the region. 

The exploratory visit was undertaken at the request of President José Ramos-Horta and builds on the relationships established by a UNSW delegation in August 2023. Timor-Leste is one of Australia’s closest neighbours, with a shared history and strong people-to-people links. UNSW has a longstanding connection with Timor-Leste, most notably through the University’s ongoing support for the Diplomacy Training Program.

UNSW’s engagement with government, academia, the UN, and civil society in Timor-Leste is part of the University’s broader effort of “strategic accompaniment” to achieve impact and stand out as a leading university, beyond cohering research and teaching investments. Supported by the UNSW Institute for Global Development, the harnessing of STEM capabilities, such as UNSW’s world leading expertise in aquaculture, at the intersection of security, politics, and development in the geography of vulnerable and high-risk states such as Timor-Leste; is a key element of that strategic accompaniment.

The visit was reported on by local media in Dili and more detail is available in a story published on Inside UNSW.