American Univesity of Beirut

Asfari Institute unveils its first cohort of senior civil society fellows

aOffice of Communications,​​​

The Asfari Institute for Civil Society a​nd Citizenship at AUB has announced the first three senior civil society fellows to join their new Fellowship program.

Director of the Asfari Institute Lina Abou Habib notes that, “the Fellowship program seeks to provide a space for civil society scholars and activists to reflect on, contribute to the debate, and produce knowledge on civil society and citizenship in the MENA region.  In doing so, the Fellows will contribute to the mission of the Asfari Institute as a regional hub for civil society."

The three new senior civil society fellows are:

Dr. Maitrayee Mukhopadhyay is a social anthropologist with more than four decades of solid global research, activism, writing, and community engagement experience in gender and development. She has contributed to the conceptual framing of the gender and development field worldwide and in leading groundbreaking research as well as building the capacities of young activists and researchers from the Global South. Dr. Mukhopadhyay will be working with the Asfari Institute on a global research project which seeks to "Re-imagine Gender and Development" in a context of heightened challenges, pervasive conflict, increasing inequalities, and shrinking civic space.

Ms. Fahima Hashem is civil society activist from Sudan who has been an active part of civil society action and has worked with youth groups, women's rights organizations, and other civil society elements. She will be working with the Asfari Institute in developing her research on the historicity of the civil society movement in Sudan with emphasis on women's rights and feminist organizations and the forms of resistance they have been developing, especially since the 2019 uprising and until now.

Ms. Dayna Ash​ is a young intersectional feminist and civil society activist in Lebanon who has been spearheading a national effort in developing and nurturing safe spaces for queer folks in Lebanon and beyond. She has co-led a major effort to support the communities most affected by the infamous Beirut port blast of August 4, 2020. Dayna will be working with the Asfari Institute in operationalizing the key values of diversity, inclusion, and equality into its work with civil society. She will also support the institute in expanding its civil society outreach and design knowledge products which respond to essential needs of various elements of civil society in the region.

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