Dr Asenati Chan Tung – or Nati as she is known amongst friends – joined Sustineo in June 2019. Since then, Nati has been a central figure behind not only the type of work we do and who we work with, but how we work.
As a Samoan national and former lecturer at University of the South Pacific, Nati brought an acute eye for working well in cross cultural contexts, the importance of raising up local voices and Pacific Indigenous methodologies in research design and delivery, and a strong commitment to research rigour and ethics. Over the last four years, Nati has supported, informed and re-shaped our approach to work in the Pacific.
Aligned to her technical insight as an applied human geographer with expertise on gender and development and labour mobility, Nati has delivered a range of significant projects with the Sustineo team. These include (but are by no means limited to): leading important work for UN Women on identifying pathways to leadership for women; identifying the gendered impacts of COVID-19 on tuna industries in Kiribati, Tonga, Tuvalu for the Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency; coordinating significant research related to Australia Pacific Labour mobility; driving our implementation of the inaugural Graduate Outcomes Survey for the Fiji Higher Education Commission; and leading the evaluation of UN Women’s Gender Inequality of Risk and Promoting Community Resilience Project in Solomon Islands.
Underpinning Nati’s work has been her friendly and personable approach to relationship building with partners across a broad range of Pacific island countries – working with teams in Solomon Islands, Samoa, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu, Federated States of Micronesia, and Kiribati. More broadly, Nati has been a driving force behind improving how Sustineo, as an organisation, partners and collaborates.
Beyond her expertise, Asenati is calm, kind, and considerate colleague. She embraces the ethos of lifelong learning and is always keen to expand her expertise. In parallel, she is generous with sharing her own experience and insights with other team members. She is driven by Sustineo’s organisation mission of supporting positive change in the places we work, while always showing adherence to (and re-centring colleagues on) our key principles and values for how we work.
Thank you Asenati for all your work over the last four years!