Academic Working Group

Symposia Series

 May 23-24, 2016 (Arthur Chung Conference Center, Georgetown, Guyana) June 5, 2016 (York College, Queens, New York)

Theme: Guyana at 50: Understanding Our Independence Journey
National Symposium Series Press Release

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Education in all forms is an important vehicle for individual and collective advancement and the enhancement of national life. The Golden Jubilee affords us an opportunity to examine the various knowledge traditions, the evolution of Guyanese thought and their contributions to Guyana’s development. It also provides a moment to think about how these processes and ideas can inform the next 50 years. This educational component will take the form of symposia in Guyana and New York. They will allow academics, intellectuals, students, community leaders, and the general public to share knowledge, to exchange ideas, and to launch sustainable initiatives that will support the building of trust and national cohesion in Guyana. Specifically, these symposia aim to facilitate cross-disciplinary discussion on four interrelated questions:

  • Who are we?
  • What has been our journey?
  • What can we become?
  • How do we get there?

In Guyana, the National Symposium will be held in Georgetown on Monday, May 23rd and Tuesday, May 24th, 2016. The New York symposium is scheduled for Sunday, June 5th, 2016 at York College, Queens. When submitting your proposal, please indicate whether you prefer to make your presentation in Guyana or in New York.


The organizers anticipate that the symposia will generate high-quality knowledge about Guyana. These papers, panels, presentations, performances and exhibitions will represent a substantial multidisciplinary synthesis of the Guyanese experience and aspirations 50 years after independence.  These materials, along with related initiatives, can prove useful in the development of national development strategies, especially in education (formal, non-formal, and informal). Paper presentations must be in English and will be 15 minutes in duration, with 5 minutes afterwards for discussion. Panel presentations will be 10 minutes each initially, followed by discussion will be engaged. The organizers expect that the papers and presentations to the symposia will be of the quality acceptable for publication in a peer-reviewed journal.  To this end, papers should be prepared using the MLA Manual of Style or the Chicago Manual of Style. The materials presented to the symposia will be available on multiple media platforms.  Wherever possible, symposia presentations will be broadcast/streamed nationally and internationally.  All presentations will be deposited in the National Archives and used by NCN and the Learning Channel in subsequent public television and educational programming.

Virtual Participation

If you are unable to attend either of the symposia in person, you may participate virtually—either through a virtual poster or a virtual presentation.  Virtual presentations will be scheduled in the formal programme. Virtual presentations should be no longer than 15 minutes.

Other Celebrations of Guyana’s 50th Anniversary of Independence

Guyana’s Golden Jubilee Celebration (Guyana)
Guyana’s 50th Independence Anniversary Celebration Committee (New York)
Guyana50: Memories of Life in British Guiana