Concept Paper

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Concept Paper
Arab Forum for Scientific Research
and Sustainable Development
To the forefront we shall return
Third Session
10-12 December 2015, Beirut, Lebanon
Under the patronage of
Minister of State for Administrative Reform
H.E. Nabil de Freige
Introduction
Research and development are the most important generators of knowledge
and major knowledge transfer channels within knowledge-based economies.
Partnerships between universities, research & development institutions, and the
private sector are crucial factors for enabling the use of this knowledge. In recent
decades, developed countries and major international players became aware of
this fact, and they significantly expanded their expenditures on research and
development, from both public and private sources. Similarly, developing countries
in East and Southeast Asia increased their spending on science, technology and
innovation, and achieved high growth rates and job creation. In the Arab world,
scientific research activities have emerged and expanded under the pressures of
social demand; yet the link between these activities and actual development needs
has been, and still is, rather weak. Therefore, there is an urgent need to increase and
strengthen partnerships and linkages among the education, research, development
and innovation (RDI) sectors, and economic sectors in the Arab world. There is
also a need to promote cooperation with, and to benefit from, global expertise and
the Arab Diaspora.
In addition, scientific knowledge and research in the human and social sciences play
a significant role in the formulation of effective and evidence-based development
policies. Only such policies can truly address the real challenges facing the Arab
region. Further benefits can be achieved from the outcomes of research when the
science-policy interface in the Arab countries is strengthened.
The Arab Forum for Scientific Research and Sustainable Development is an effort
made by ALECSO to promote effective partnerships between education, scientific
research and other sectors concerned with development and related issues in the
Arab world. This annual Forum provides an Arab platform that is unique in its
nature, unlike other conventional conferences and meetings. It aims to gather
senior officials and decision makers from the concerned Arab ministries, including
ministries of planning, economic development, education, research, industry, and
agriculture, with scientists and researchers from universities, training & research
institutions, as well as producers and service providers from the public and private
sectors in the Arab countries. The Forum is a formal, scientific and economic event
that provides an appropriate platform for cooperation and integration between
the participating organizations that should facilitate and enable the creation of
appropriate mechanisms to link graduate programs and scientific research projects
that are conducted at universities and research centres with the needs of Arab
communities and relevant development plans.
The Forum brings together Arab experts, researchers and specialists in addition
to Arab institutions and corporations to communicate with their respective
counterparts at the regional and international levels. Furthermore it aims to attract
scientists and Arab experts in the Diaspora, enabling them to contribute to the
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localization and transfer of technology to Arab countries and to participate actively
in the implementation of their development programs.
The Forum is held annually in different Arab countries on a rotating basis. The first
session of the Forum was held in December 2013 in Tunis, under the patronage of
his excellency the president of the Republic of Tunisia, and the second session was
held in December 2014, under the patronage of his highness Sheikh Sultan Ben
Mohamed Al-Qasmi, Ruler of Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.
- Mandates Decisions of previous Arab summits on the development of higher
education and scientific research.
- The Action Plan for the Development of Education in the Arab World.
- The Arab Project for the Advancement of Arabic Language Towards a
Knowledge-Based society.
- The Arab Strategy for Scientific and Technological Research and Innovation.
- Global decisions, notably the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
Rationale
 Whereas the Arab world is directing some of its wealth towards knowledge
production, the utilization of science and technology in the region has not
yet matured into national systems of innovation that are capable of utilizing
knowledge for wealth generation, economic growth and job creation that can
have a real and measurable impact on development. This has been attributed
to many reasons, the most obvious of which is the weak partnerships between
the three key actors (universities - research centres - production and services
sectors), which if activated will be able to convert investment in fixed capital
into wealth again.
 Higher education and research activities will not promote sustainable
development unless their results are nationally invested, in other words,
utilized to serve society. Achieving this requires strong partnerships between
higher education, and research and development institutions, on the one hand,
and production and service sectors on the other. These partnerships need to
be set up and activated through certain mechanisms and supportive polices.
Unfortunately, such mechanisms are either lacking or too weak in most of the
developing countries, including the Arab region.
Objectives of the Forum
The Forum aims to enhance the contribution of universities, research centres and
innovators in sustainable development in the Arab region through:
a. Strengthen cooperation between Arab ministries, educational and training
institutions, and scientific research centres, and activate partnerships with
production and service companies.
b. Encourage Arab researchers and innovators and link them to specialized
entreprises with the aim to transform their innovations into products and
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economic projects; in addition to enhancing networking opportunities with
Arab scholars in the Diaspora in order to benefit from their expertise in the
development of Arab countries.
c. Promote the role of the private sector in supporting, encouraging and financing
scientific research activities in Arab countries, and investing in venture capital.
d. Contribute towards the development of scientific publishing, educational
material and digital Arabic content producers in the Arab region.
e. Share Arab and international best practices and successful experiences that
will better enable Arab countries and institutions to learn or take advantage of
such practices.
Themes
The third session of the Forum will discuss the following themes and topics:
Theme I : The Current Status of Scientific Research and Development
in the Arab Region
- Vision and strategies
- Status in figures
- Governance and quality of research and development
- National legislation supporting research and development and research funding
Theme II : Scientific Research and Development in the Service
of Sustainable Development Policies
- Arab science, technology and innovation indicators
- Innovation and the achievement of the knowledge economy
- Role of technology and networking in achieving sustainable development
- Promoting the science-policy interface
Theme III: Promoting the Use of Arabic Language in Scientific
Research and Development
- Digital Arabic content for scientific research
- Innovative approaches to research in the human and social sciences
- Arab networks for scientific research.
Theme IV: Means of Catalyzing Research and Development
- Arab investments and the role of the private sector
- Funding mechanisms
- Strengthening Arab- Arab and Arab-international cooperation
- Linking universities and research institutions to the private sector
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Venue, Date and Time:
- The third session of the Arab Forum for Scientific Research and Sustainable
Development will be held in Beirut, Lebanon during the period from 10 to 12
December 2015.
- The Opening ceremony will take place at 17:00 PM on 10 December 2015.
- The event will take place at the headquarters of the General Union of Chambers of
Commerce, Industry and Agriculture for Arab Countries, «Adnan Kassar Building».
Committees Overseeing the Forum
In order to ensure the continuity of this event and increase its impact, there is a
vital need for focused efforts to mobilize existing human capital and resources.
As such, the membership of the preparatory and scientific committees of the
Forum was extended to include the following:
Chief Supervisor
Prof. Dr. Abdullah Hamad Muhareb,
Director General of ALECSO.
General Supervisor
Prof. Dr. Muhammad Abdulbari Al-Qadasi,
Assistant Director-General of ALECSO.
Preparatory and Scientific Committee
• Arab League Education, Culture and Science Organization (ALECSO):
1. Prof. Dr. Abulgasem Hassan El-Badri ,
Director of the Department of Science and Scientific Research,
ALECSO, Chairman of the Committee.
2. Mrs. Sally Hassan Hattab,
coordinator of scientific projects and activities.
3. Dr. Hisham Nashabah,
Member of the Executive Council of ALECSO (Lebanon)
• Lebanese National Commisson for Unesco :
Dr. Zahida Darwiche Jabbour Secretary-General
• Rafik Hariri Foundation:
Mrs. Salwa Siniora Baassiri,
Director General
• Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA)
Dr. Nibal Idlebi,
Chief, Innovation Section
Ms. Jana El-Baba, Researcher, Sustainable
Development Policies Division
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• Maghreb Institute for Research and Strategic Studies
Dr. Faraj Alsayeh, Director-General
• Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
(ISESCO)
Dr. Aisha Bamun,
Sciences Directorate
• General Union of Chambers of Commerce, Industry
and Agriculture for Arab Countries
Dr. Imad Shehab,
Secretary-General
Mrs. Hoda Taher Ksten, Director of Arab and Joint Chambers Affairs
Mrs. Ghina Itani,
Responsible for conferences
• The Ministry of Education and Higher Education in Lebanon
Dr. Ahmed Aljamal,
Director-General of Higher Education
• Rafik Hariri University
Dr. Riad Chedid,
Dr. Ahmad Smaili,
President
Vice President for Academic Affairs
• The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural
Organization, UNESCO Regional Office - Beirut
Mr. George Awad,
Programme Officer, Information and Communication sector
• Lebanese National Council for Scientific Research
Dr. Mouïn Hamzé,
Secretary-General
• Arab Science and Technology Foundation (ASTF)
Dr. Abdullah al-Najjar, President
Dr. Ghada Amer,
Vice President
• Federation of Arab Scientific Research Councils (FASRC)
Prof. Fathi Mansouri,
Assistant Secretary-General
of FASRC
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• The Secretariat of the League of Arab States:
Dr. Yasser Abdel Moneim Abdel Azim,
Director of Education and Higher
Education and Scientific Research Management,
General Secretariat of the League of Arab States
• Zewail City of Science and Technology :
Dr. Najwa Al-Badri,
Head of the Department
of Biomedical Sciences
Website: www.alecso.org/rasd
Contact us:
E-Mail Address : [email protected]
Postal Address: Avenue Mohamed V
P. B. Main Office 1120 - Tunis – Tunisia
Or contact:
The Chairman of the Preparatory Committee of the Forum:
Prof. Dr. Abulgasem Hassan El-Badri
Phone and Fax : +216 71 905 075
E-Mail Address : [email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
Arab Forum for Scien Research And Susta
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