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Education for Citizenship in the Arab World With Dr. Muhammad Faour

220 Eggers Hall

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Education for Citizenship in the Arab World With Dr. Muhammad Faour Dr. Muhammad Faour Non-Resident Senior Associate, Carnegie Middle East Center, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace The current education reform efforts in the MENA region heavily focus on such “technical” aspects as building more schools, introducing computers to schools, improving test scores in mathematics and sciences, and bridging the gender gap in education. While necessary and important, the reform’s current emphasis misses a basic human component: Students need to learn at a very early age what it means to be citizens who learn how to think, seek and produce knowledge, question, and innovate rather than be subjects of the state who are taught what to think and how to behave. These attributes are essential if the region is to move away from its traditional reliance on “rents” in the form of oil and outside assistance, and toward the kind of system that empowers its citizens with the requisite skills to build self-generating, prosperous economies and achieve a quality of life that can come through respect for diversity, critical thinking, creativity, and exercising one’s duties and rights as an active citizen. Dr. Muhammad Faour is a non-resident scholar at the Carnegie Middle East Center, where his research focuses on education reform in Arab countries, with an emphasis on citizenship education. A recipient of numerous prestigious awards and fellowships, Faour has also been a visiting researcher at several U.S. universities, and has served as a consultant to several United Nations agencies, Lebanese foundations, and nongovernmental organization (NGOs). Faour is the author of several books and monographs, including The Silent Revolution in Lebanon: Changing Values of the Youth, and The Arab World after Desert Storm, and the co-author of University Students in Lebanon: Background and Attitudes (with Adnan El-Amine). His work has also been published in numerous journals, including Middle Eastern Studies. This event is sponsored by the Executive Education Programs, the Moynihan


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