The Future of the New University in Paraguay:
Towards a New Vision for Higher Education

At Universidad de Asuncion (UNA) in Paraguay

June 24 – 26, 2019


click here for spanish version

Co-sponsored by: Rutgers University-Community Leadership Center, Rutgers-Camden Office of the Chancellor, Rutgers-Camden Office of the Provost, Rutgers Global, Universidad Nacional de Asunción-Paraguay (la UNA), and the U.S. Embassy in Paraguay


This academic gathering brings together a diverse group of university stakeholders to engage in discussions about the role of the new university and to develop a platform for repositioning the UNA’s strategic plan within the current and emerging social, political and academic internal and external contexts. 

The aim is to legitimize and position the UNA as an anchor for collectively solving local and national problems through the strategic and innovative development of the university’s three pillars –Academic Management; Research; and Social Engagement.

Conference Themes Areas:

  • The University’s role in knowledge creation within changing global, national and local, institutional and professional contexts.

  • The role of the University in promoting and facilitating entrepreneurship, agency, and the formation of students.

  • Higher education curriculum, teaching, and learning practices to develop students that are prepared to tackle social problems in the future.

  • New conceptions of academic citizenship anchored in the open bond between university and society that is developed through openness, dialogue, mutual integration, joint responsibility and care.

  • The role of the University in national sustainable development that utilizes the human capital and resources of the university to protect and develop important national resources – water, energy and forests.   

Panels, workshops and discussion will be aimed at topics such as:

  • Strategies for improving the capacity of younger scholars and researchers and broaden access to external populations who are underrepresented in higher education.

  • New ideas about how to transform the role of the university in the country, region and community to meet the changing needs of the local and national communities and reposition the university as the main national vehicle for innovation, research and service.

  • Positioning of the University as an anchor for societal development by integrating innovation, entrepreneurship and civil society within its philosophical and strategic structure.

  • Developing strategic benchmarks and indicators for accountability and transparency.

  • Cultivating innovation and research relevance of the scholarly work for transformational social and economic impact.

The Conference is the outcome of the leading work of Rutgers Professor Dr. Gloria Bonilla-Santiago in her role of Fulbright Faculty Fellow at the UNA.  With support from the US Embassy in Paraguay, she has led the planning of this event with a team of academic leaders from the UNA. The conference coincides with the selection of a new Chancellor and Vice-Chancellor and the adoption of a new Strategic Plan for the University.


About UNA:

The Universidad Nacional de Asunción is a public university in Paraguay. Founded in 1889, it is  the oldest university in the country.  Originally, it consisted of only the Faculties of Law, Medicine and Mathematics, and Pharmacy and Obstetrics.   Currently, the UNA has expanded into 14 academic departments offering over 81 majors. The academic community is made up of about 55,000 students and 9,000 faculty and researchers.


  • School of Chemical Sciences
  • School of Medical Sciences
  • School of Dentistry
  • School of Engineering
  • School of Law and Social Sciences 
  • School of Economic Sciences
  • School of Philosophy
  • School of Agricultural Sciences
  • School of Veterinary Sciences
  • Polytechnic School
  • School of Architecture, Design and Art
  • School of Exact and Natural Sciences
  • School of Odontology
  • Polytechnic School
  • School of Nursing and Obstetrics
  • School of Social Sciences
  • School of Social Work


  • Institute of Arts
  • Institute of Languages
  • Institute for Research in Health Sciences

UNA also houses several technology centers and research facilities for the academic community, both for conducting scientific research, and for the development of postgraduate studies.    

The conference is open to: scholars, university faculty, researchers, practitioners, NGO’s, private sector leaders and students.  It is a great opportunity for those that have an interest in Paraguay and interested in forging academic exchanges and joint research and publications.


Please click here to download Conference Schedule 

For more information, contact the Rutgers-Camden Community Leadership Center at 856-225-6348 or email

Location:  Conference to be held at the UNA Main Campus in Asuncion
Accommodations for those visiting from other countries at the Sheraton – Asuncion