American Univesity of Beirut

Targeted MPI

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​WHY TARGETED-MPI?

Transparent & Resilient Gender Equality Through Integrated Monitoring Planning and Implementation (TARGETED-MPI)focuses on institutional changes through the development and effective implementation of Gender Equality Plans​ in business and management schools to drive more inclusive, sustainable and transparent academic cultures. We understand gender equality as concerning fair treatment, equality of opportunity, equal access to resources, and equal rights and protection regardless of one's gender, which should not be limited by stereotypes, gender roles or prejudice (ILO, 2015; Van den Brink, Benschop, and Jansen, 2010).


Our project will, therefore, produce significant benefits beyond the confines of the partner institutions to other research organizations in the countries of the consortium and across European Research Area (ERA). It will address critical societal needs, contribute to the achievement of the ERA objectives on gender equality, and contribute to the development of sustainable, resilient research organizations.

OSB Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Commitment Statement

The Suliman S. Olayan School of Business at the American University of Beirut is committed to fostering an inclusive community which promotes a culture of diversity, equality, equity and inclusion. We strive to uphold an environment in which the rights and dignity of all its faculty, staff and students are respected. In order for OSB to remain a leading business school, we strive to continue making the above values embedded in all of our activities. We are committed to the implementation of  transparent policies, practices and procedures that allow everyone to grow, flourish and develop a sense of belonging. We count on the support of the OSB community to ensure an inclusive workplace for all.

AUB: Economic Inclusion in the MENA Webinar Series

On January 17, 2023, Dr Fida Afiouni, associate provost, associate professor of human resource management, and founding partner of the Center for Inclusive Business and Leadership (CIBL), who is leading the TARGETED-MPI project at AUB OSB, took part in the first webinar series, “Multistakeholder Mobilising for Inclusion”, and shared her experience about the TARGETED-MPI project, showing the importance of multistakeholder mobilising.

During the webinar, Dr Fida Afiouni expressed that TARGETED-MPI project is a good example of multi stakeholder mobilising across borders making it a model for other universities to follow suit and institutionalise gender equality globally in all institutions. Dr Fida Afiouni stated that multistakeholder mobilising is key to address complex, large scale, multilevel problems such as gender equality in academia. "Existing models of university governance are not tailored to meet the needs of an increasingly diverse group of faculty, student & staff”, commented Afiouni. Based on that, she highlighted that “partnering with other universities, building a gender equality observatory network, then partnering with stakeholders within the institution is key to drive change and achieve impact”. Moreover, Dr Afiouni mentioned that being at the implementation and impact stage of the TARGETED-MPI project “within our own university, internal stakeholders, mobilising is key for successful mobilisation”. She stated that it was this back and forth movement between external and internal mobilisation that led to the success of the project.

Unconscious Bias Awareness Campaign

As part of OSB Impact, and part of my TARGETED-MPI Objective # 5, the TARGETED-MPI team at AUB worked on addressing unconscious bias, in the month of March 2023. The TARGETED-MPI team at AUB planned, designed, and implemented an awareness campaign about unconscious bias. Nine focus group discussions were organized at the Suliman S. Olayan School of Business whereby OSB students where invited to participate in this initiative. The purpose of the focus group discussions is to understand and become aware of the types of biases we are subjected to, discuss and express any issues we face related to diversity, equity, and inclusion, and identify ways we can minimize the occurrence of such incidences and create a climate of inclusion. The ultimate goal is to then develop unconscious bias training to minimize the occurrence of such incidences and create a climate of inclusion, where every single student feel that they belong, regardless of individual differences.

In addition to that, an awareness campaign about unconscious bias was launched on social media and on campus which included posts, flyers, banners, posters, and goodies in order to raise awareness about unconscious bias, its damaging effects, and how to combat it. There was an amazing level of engagement from the Suliman S. Olayan School of Business at AUB students, faculty, and staff supporting the TARGETED-MPI objectives towards achieving gender equality. Moreover, the Suliman S. Olayan School of Business at AUB and the AUB TARGETED-MPI team celebrated International Women’s Day. “It is a great pleasure to work with students, colleagues, and staff on challenging unconscious biases that hold women and minorities back! Together, we can create a just, inclusive, equitable, and unbiased educational environment”, said Dr. Fida Afiouni.


Transparency - Resilience - Integration

TARGETED-MPI brings together academic research excellence and impact, leadership in engagement with a wide range of stakeholders, and expertise from partner institutions with diverse academic environments, traditions, and cultures. Knowledge exchange between our culturally diverse institutions is vital to develop and enhance gender equality initiatives and outcomes, including learning from current initiatives at national and institutional level. 


The TARGETED-MPI project was made possible through the generous funding of EU Horizon 2020.


Our milestones have been made possible thanks to the partners we have worked with in five countries Athens University of Economics and Business (AUEB), Greece; Lancaster University (ULANC), United Kingdom; Stockholm School of Economics (SSE), Sweden; Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB), Belgium; and, American University of Beirut (AUB), Lebanon. These partnerships are critical to the building and delivery of an inclusive research culture in and beyond European RPOs and RFOs.​


Principle Investigator Dr. Fida Afiouni
Co-Investigator Dr. Yasmeen Makarem​


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