The Global Innovation through Science and Technology (GIST) initiative will hold the third and final in a series of regional conferences aimed at identifying and proposing solutions to economic development challenges in Muslim-majority nations.
The Royal Academy of the Kingdom of Morocco in Rabat, will host the June 16-17, 2011 conference, which focuses on economic development through science and technology. Innovation experts and leaders representing 25 nations across the Middle East, North Africa and South and Central Asia are scheduled to participate.
One of the primary science and technology initiatives proposed by US President Barack Obama during his 2009 Cairo speech, the GIST conference will serve as a forum for regional innovation to present and discuss mechanisms to create and sustain programs that balance both economic development and global market needs.
In total, more than 200 participants representing the research, government, private business, university and NGO sectors of 25 nations have participated in prior GIST conferences in Alexandria, Egypt and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, respectively.
The GIST initiative involves several concurrent components to develop specific science, technology and innovation (STI) capabilities in the region.
Recommendations and plans developed at the prior conferences and strategic planning sessions will guide and inform the creation of pilot projects and plans to promote economic development and strengthen regional cooperation — expected to be announced in Rabat.
GIST is supported by the US Department of State and implemented by CRDF Global.
CRDF Global is an independent, nonprofit organization established in 1995 to promote international scientific and technical collaboration through grants, technical resources and training. CRDF Global has 16 years of experience managing international research funding programs and supporting emerging science and technology infrastructure in more than 30 countries in Eurasia, the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia.