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    At ICESCO Headquarters, First Consultative Meeting for the Knowledge Index in the Islamic World

    21 December 2022

    With high-level participation including ministers, officials and representatives of the ICESCO Member States and international organizations and institutions, the Headquarters of the Islamic World Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ICESCO) saw the opening of the First Consultative Meeting on “Strategic Indicators for Development in the Islamic World: Global Knowledge Index as a Model,” held by ICESCO, in partnership with Mohamed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). The two-day event aims to discuss the Global Knowledge Index as a standard for measuring the knowledge performance of world countries and understanding the changes they undergo and the challenges they face.

    The Meeting opened with the recitation of verses from the Holy Quran, followed by an address by Dr. Salim M. AlMalik, ICESCO Director-General, who highlighted the benefits of living in this era of knowledge advancement, noting that the power of states is now measured by their achievements in the field of technology and scientific research and their abilities to keep up with knowledge trends.

    The Director-General added that the sustainability of development hinges upon people’s ability to grow continuously, which calls for introducing changes to the mechanisms of scientific research and building capacities capable of producing knowledge. He stated that several countries in the Islamic world have made major strides in the fields of the knowledge index, while others have still not provided the desired statistics and data.

    The Director-General concluded his address by presenting a number of recommendations for promoting the Knowledge Index in the Islamic World, setting up a general framework for the Index likely to encompass accurately all its dimensions, and working towards building effective partnerships in this field. Dr. AlMalik also reiterated ICESCO’s intention to be the focal point between the Member States and global indexes.

    For his part, Mr. Jamal bin Huwairib, CEO of Mohamed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation, reaffirmed his Foundation’s eagerness to develop and widen the scope of cooperation with ICESCO to include new fields, notably promoting the status of Arabic, supporting knowledge paths and involving the youth in the process of building knowledge societies.

    Speaking next was Dr. Hany Torky, Chief Technical Advisor and Knowledge Project Director at the UNDP, who commended ICESCO’s efforts to support cultural and knowledge development in its Member States. The UNDP official also highlighted the importance of the Global Knowledge Index, which includes 37 ICESCO Member States.

    Following the opening session, the Ministerial session was held, which focused on the knowledge challenges in the Islamic World. The session was moderated by Ms. Amira Al-Fadil, Head of the Sector of partnerships and International Cooperation at ICESCO, and featured the statements of some ministers. Dr. Ayman Ashour, Egyptian Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research, stressed the importance of knowledge advancements and their positive impact on all forms of life, highlighting Egyptian efforts to invest in human capital and the country’s achievements in the field of scientific research in Egypt in 2022

    For his part, H.E. Dr. Patrick Mouguiama-Daouda, Minister of Higher Education, Scientific Research, Technology Transfer and National Education, the Gabonese Republic, underlined the need to work towards disseminating knowledge and promoting the exchange of expertise to reach the youth, women and the most vulnerable groups. Dr. Abdellatif Miraoui, Minister of Higher Education, Scientific Research and Innovation of the Kingdom of Morocco, also gave an address where he highlighted the importance of keeping up with modern technology, capitalizing on young talents, attracting capacities and giving due attention to social and human sciences.

    At the end of the session, a discussion session was held where several secretaries general of Member States’ National Commissions asked many questions and put forth some proposals that enriched the theme of the session.

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