VC’s Open Lecture: Professor Stephen J Toope

03 September 2020 | From Kgethi

Dear colleagues and students

I am extremely pleased to invite you to the second virtual Vice-Chancellor’s Open Lecture for 2020. It will be presented by Professor Stephen J Toope, vice-chancellor of the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom. His lecture is titled “Global partners, global leaders”.

The lecture will highlight the indispensable role played by universities in tackling some of the world’s most pressing challenges – from the consequences of climate change to the scourge of infectious diseases. Professor Toope will look at how institutions of higher learning are creators, curators and communicators of knowledge and whether they are able to carry out their essential mission in today’s world of complexity with quick communication and deliberate disinformation.

He will argue that global collaboration, specifically collaboration with, and between, African universities is key to addressing some of the great issues of our age. Reflecting on some of Cambridge’s recent experiences of working with African partners, he will explore the possibilities and the limitations of cooperation between universities and will suggest that only through partnership and collaboration can universities truly take a leadership role in serving their societies.

Professor Toope studied history and literature at Harvard University, graduating magna cum laude in 1979. He obtained degrees in common law and civil law at McGill University in 1983 and is an alumnus of Trinity College, Cambridge, where he completed a PhD in 1987.

He was director of the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto, and president of the University of British Columbia. A former Dean of Law, McGill University, he was also chair of the United Nations Working Group on Enforced and Involuntary Disappearances.

Professor Toope publishes in global journals on human rights, international dispute resolution, international environmental law, the use of force, and international legal theory, and has lectured at universities around the world. His book, Legitimacy and Legality in International Law, co-authored with Professor Jutta Brunnée, won the ASIL’s 2011 Certificate of Merit for Creative Scholarship.

Professor Toope’s academic interests are in international law, human rights, international legal theory and international development.

Please join us in what promises to be a thought-provoking lecture.

When: Wednesday, 16 September 2020

Time: 17:30

Platform: Microsoft Teams

Please register online to attend the lecture.


Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng

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