Issam Fares Institute

IFI Newsletter Issue No.16 - April 2013

IFI Newsletter Issue No.16 - April 2013 Web Part Menu

 Public Policy in the Arab World 
Palestinian popular committees project completed

   IFI earlier this year completed a project that began in December 2010 to enhance the role of Popular Committees (PCs) in refugee camps as equal partners in the decision-making processes that affect their communities. The project, supported by the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, was launched in response to widespread demands by all concerned actors, including refugees themselves, UNRWA, civil society groups and the Lebanese government. After consultations in early 2011, the project comprised capacity-building activities with popular committees in five camps: Bourj El Barajneh, Shatila, Mar Ilyas, Ein El Hilwi and Miye w Miye. The capacity building activities included training PC members in computer use, identifying camp needs, managing education and health services, promoting inclusive decision-making, proposal writing, and general management.
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Research, Advocacy and Public Policy-making World
IFI Researches Policy-making in Higher Education Quality

   IFI has launched a Higher Education Quality Assurance Policy Tracing Study that is a retrospective policy analysis of the development of a Quality Assurance draft law in Lebanon. The project aims to generate insights into how policies are made, what influences policy-making, and the use of evidence in this process. Quality assurance in higher education has recently become a policy priority of ministries of education in the Arab World. Lebanon's work on this began in 2004, when the swift increase in the number and diversity of teaching institutions generated a clear need for a national QA system. See another IFI policy-tracing study: Summary ||| Press Release: English ||| Arabic

Youth Workshop to research "dignity"

   IFI and the Faculty of Health Sciences at AUB recently hosted a second workshop on how young people across the Arab world understand "dignity". The two-day workshop of researchers from seven Arab countries (Syria, Iraq, Lebanon, Yemen, Morocco, Palestine and Egypt), focused on developing a methodology and an action plan for a multi-country research project. The project will explore the experiences, meanings, and expressions of dignity among youth in the context of current transformations across the Arab World, and also how the experiences, meaning and expressions of dignity are linked to young people's quality of life, well-being, aspirations and hope for the future. Read more

Arab Policy Roundtable explores the "civil state"

   IFI's Arab Public Policy Roundtable series has completed two discussion sessions on the "civil state", comprising academics and researchers from four Arab countries. The project, headed by IFI Senior Public Policy Fellow Dr Tarek Mitri, seeks to analyze what different individuals, leaders and organizations in the region mean by the term "civil state", especially in the context of current events in the region. Participants expressed their views on this increasingly popular concept and analyzed its implications on three levels: the political process (elections, constitutions), freedom and human rights, and social equity. An IFI research team presented a study that traced the historical origins of the civil state term, and also tracked positions of key actors on the nature of states now being re-configured and re-defined in the region. A full report on the project will be published in June. Read the summary of the second roundtable discussion in English ||| Arabic.

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IFI at WMD Free Zone Meeting
 IFI Associate Director Karim Makdisi participated in the "Athens Dialogue on establishing in the Middle East a Zone Free of Weapons of Mass Destruction and their Means of Delivery", at the European Public Law Organization (EPLO) in Greece. See the full report.
Farajalla joins Climate Change group
 Nadim Farajalla, IFI's Faculty Research Director of the Climate Change and Environment in the Arab World Program, has become a member of the "Vulnerability assessment working group" of the "Regional initiative for the assessment of Climate Change impacts on water resources and socio economic vulnerability in the Arab Region", a joint initiative of ESCWA and the League of Arab States. Read More
Methods for Gathering Data from Official Sources: Access and Applications
  Dr. Hana A. El-Ghali, Senior Program Coordinator of IFI's Research, Advocacy and Public Policy-Making program (RAPP) recently presented at a Lebanese national workshop organized by the Regional Partnership on Culture and Development, on the "Access to Information Bill" and the role of media in the advocacy process.
Working Paper
  The Legacy of Sectarian Consociationalism and the Transition to a Fully-fledged Democracy in Lebanon.

IFI Working paper #14 by Samir Makdisi and Youssef El-Khalil
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 Issam Fares Institute for Public Policy and International Affairs
American University of Beirut

PO Box  11-0236, Riad el Solh
Beirut 1107 2020, Lebanon
Tel: +961 1 350000, x 4150/1
Fax: +961 1 737627 

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