Speakers at an online seminar have emphasised Dhaka University's role in achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through research and innovation.
They also said it would be difficult to reach the goal by 2030 if all the universities in the country do not work properly.
The online seminar titled "Role of Universities in Achieving Sustainable Development Goals" was organised by the Innovation Creation and Entrepreneurship Centre of Dhaka University on Wednesday to mark the 99th founding anniversary of the university.
At the programme Vice-Chancellor of Dhaka University Professor Akhtaruzzaman said the planners who work for developing the universities must have a good mindset and management skills.
"We need a big budget for overall development including research and innovation at the universities. But we are not getting that. In this situation how will we contribute in nation building activities?" he asked.
"Yes, we have responsibilities to gain the SDGs and we have started work in this regard. We are going to revise our curriculum," he added.
Professor Dr Shamsul Alam, member of the General Economic Division of the Planning Commission, said sustainable development is essential for our existence and prosperity.
"Dhaka University contributed in building the nation, bringing independence and making us prosper. So, we believe that we will achieve the SDGs under the leadership of the university," he said.
"Universities including Dhaka University have a responsibility to make their graduates skilled for the future world. The graduates must have knowledge about SDGs and other plans," he opined.
Dr Alam further said the industries now import skilled manpower from India, Sri Lanka and other countries. But our universities failed to produce such qualified graduates.
"We have to think more about why we failed here," he said.
Distinguished Fellow at the Centre for Policy Dialogue Professor Dr Mustafizur Rahman said university graduates are now implementing a plan to achieve SDGs in rural areas, and they are doing it with high skill.
"The work for SDGs will be better if we can connect the implementers with the universities," he said.
President of the Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry Shams Mahmud said innovation and research are two basic pillars of achieving SDGs. Only universities can perform it perfectly.
Khurshid Alam, assistant residential representative of the United Nations Development Programme, said the Dhaka University changed the nation, and the responsibility to achieve the SDGs is now on its shoulder.
"Research is the best way to find out the way to implement the tools for achieving SDGs. The Dhaka University can contribute here," he said.
Professor Khondoker Bazlul Hoque, vice-president of the Innovation Creation and Entrepreneurship Centre, presided over the programme while Rashedur Rahman, executive director of the centre, moderated it.