The socially responsible university: a way of being
In 2001, the project "Universidad Construye País" (University Builds Country) was launched in Chile. Its aim was to carry out coordinated, joint social responsibility activities in the country’s universities. One of the people behind this project is the rector of the Catholic University of Temuco, Mónica Jiménez de la Jara. In this article, she analyses the development of the project and its conceptual roots, and discusses the most important aspects of theories and practices of university social responsibility. The initiative is included in GUNI’s Universities and Social Commitment Observatory.
The Universidad Construye País project was set up in 2001. Its network now includes fourteen Chilean universities. Since 2001, many changes have occurred in Chile, Latin America, the world, even in my own life. Today, I manage a university whose main characteristic is that it promotes social mobility in an indigenous context. Thus, I am in the enviable position of being able to directly apply a range of socially responsible practices.
- On a personal level: dignity for the individual, liberty and integrity.
- On a social level: public good and social equity, sustainable development and environmental issues, sociability and solidarity for successful coexistence, acceptance and appreciation of diversity, civic responsibility, democracy and participation.
- On a university level: commitment to truth, excellence, interdependence and transdisciplinarity.
About the author
Mónica Jiménez de la Jara, Rector
Catholic University of Temuco
Mónica Jiménez de la Jara is currently rector of the Catholic University of Temuco, Chile. She has a qualification in social work from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile and a master’s degree in social work from the Catholic University of America, Washington DC. She is the leader of the Universidad Construye País project that brings together 14 Chilean universities, founder of the Participa and Aprender corporations and is currently the chairwoman of the AraucaníAprende and La Frontera foundations.
Wednesday, November 14, 2007