In July, 2000 the Inaugural Conference of PECERA was held in Kobe, Japan. The response to the conference was beyond our expectation, with over 70 papers presented along with poster sessions and keynote addresses. Holding the conference was our first move towards achieving the purposes of PECERA. The presentations of research and the face to face contacts of researchers from around the area provided a foundation for dissemination, collaboration and cooperation. But PECERA wants to go further. We hope to share these abstracts on our website as well. We are publishing a selection of the best papers from the conference in the International Journal of Early Childhood Education. The articles are diverse, coming from different countries in the Pacific area and representing studies related to various aspects of early childhood education.

PECERA continues to thrive. We have had International conferences in Christchurch in New Zealand; Shanghai in China, Melbournein Australia, and Taipei in Taiwan. Forthcoming international conferences will be in Seoul, Korea, and Hong Kong, China. We look forward in joining closely with early childhood educators in Hong Kong in the establishment of PECERAHong Kong. As the organization grows in size and in strength it will help us all to best serve the interests of young children in the Pacific area.

-- Bernard Spodek
Professor Emeritus of
Early Childhood Education
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign