The Research Committee on Asian and Pacific Studies (RC18), State Society, Governance in Melanesia (Australian National University) and UNDP Pacific Centre held the Pacific regional symposium on security at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand on 25-26 November 2015. The symposium was aimed to engage a diverse group of regional stakeholders on important matters of regional security to strengthen the link between research and policy making in an increasingly complex Pacific.

Researchers, experts, policy makers and key community representatives from around the region engaged in critical examination of a range of “hard”, human, and environmental security issues in the Pacific during the symposium.

A total of 45 presentations covering a range of topics were made within the three broad themes above. More than 100 experts, policy makers and researchers representing academic 3 institutions, regional organizations, international organizations, government departments, civil society organizations, community groups, military and students from around the region and internationally attended the two-day symposium.

The funding was largely from the Marsden research fund which was under the supervision of Prof Steven Ratuva, director of the Macmillan Brown Centre for Pacific Studies at the University of Canterbury. UNDP also contributed by funding some participants from Fiji. There was also some contribution from the conference fees. The panel themes were: Framing regional security; Regional geo-politics and diplomacy; Human security; Media, politics and security; Peace building; Case studies session 1; Case studies session 2: French territories; Case studies 3. One of the major highlights of the symposium was the piano concert by Grammy Award winner, Prof Angelin Chang from Cleveland State University, United States.