Iraqi officials have given their approval for experts with the Forum of Federations to train Iraqi academics on a variety of federalism-related topics.
The three-week training sessions will take place in 2007. The Iraqi academics will in turn teach the courses in Arabic and Kurdish, using learning materials developed by the Forum.
The Iraqi officials – who are university professors and education administrators – gave their agreement during recent meetings in Amman, Jordan. The officials also expressed an interest in forming an Iraqi association of federal studies to develop global partnerships and enable the Iraqis and counterparts from other federal countries to learn from each other’s experiences.
The 18-person Iraqi delegation included the Kurdish minister of higher education, a representative of the Iraqi Minister of Higher Education, six university presidents as well as deans and professors of law and political science.
The event began with welcoming remarks from Canada’s ambassador to Iraq and Jordan, Arif Lalani.
The Forum will be hosting three more training sessions 2007 in Jordan with the aim of empowering more than 70 academics from across Iraq to share their learning with the next generation of Iraqi leaders. These activities are part of a two-year $2 million Iraqi project funded by the Canadian International Development Agency.
The Forum was represented at the meetings by David Cameron, the lead academic adviser and member of the Forum’s board of directors, Violeta Ruiz Almendral, also a Forum board member and expert in federalism and Marc Lemieux, the Forum’s Iraqi program director.
The event took place from Nov. 17 to 19, 2006.