Biographies of Speakers and Moderators (in alphabetical order)
Abdulkhaleq Abdulla is Professor of Political Science at Emirates University and the lead author of the 2008 Arab Knowledge Report. He was a member of the Dubai Cultural Council, the General Coordinator of the Gulf Development Forum, Director of the research center at AlKhaleej newspaper, Editor of the Gulf Strategic Report, Editor of the Journal of Social Affairs, member of the Global Agenda Council on Population Growth 2008-2009, and the recipient of the Cultural Personality of the Year 2005 Award.
Professor Abdulla holds a PhD in Political Science from Georgetown University and an MA from American University in Washington D.C. He was a Fulbright Scholar and a visiting Professor at the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies, Georgetown University. He is the author of several books and more than 30 articles. His most recent books are The Gulf Regional System and Narrative of Politics, both published in 2006.
Jasim Ahmed Mohamed Al Ali
Jasim Al Ali is the Director of Human Resources at the Department of Economic Development, Government of Dubai. In this role, he has focused on the work development of UAE nationals through the implementation of six strategic themes, including attracting & recruiting; reward & recognition; learning and development; performance management; employee engagement and leadership; and management development. Dr Jasim has been rewarded for his efforts by being acclaimed the Department¿s ¿Best Director¿ in 2009. Prior to this position, he held the role of HR Consultant for Dubai Municipality where he contributed to increasing Emiratisation from 47% of total workforce in 2007 to 62% in 2008. He was also instrumental in leading the HR Strategic Planning Process which included implementing strategies to increase employee satisfaction through performance management systems, employee empowerment, establishing a motivation award, and improving the employee culture and communication skills. His commitment at Dubai Municipality was acknowledged in 2008 when he received the Employee Excellence award for strategic policy implementation.
Dr. Al Ali received his Ph.D. from the University of Victoria based in Melbourne, Australia. His thesis titled "Structural Barriers to Emiratisation" won the University of Victoria¿s Excellence in Thesis Quality Award and was awarded best paper and best presenter award from the World Business Institute in 2008. He was also awarded the Griffith University Award for Academic Excellence in Human Resource Management in 2003. With over 21 years experience in Human Relations, Dr. Al Ali has made a significant contribution to Emiratisation and has published a number of papers in academic journals. He is currently writing a comprehensive book on nationalization, which will incorporate academic, economic and management principles, and is due for release in 2010. He also has plans to be a professional pilot and has started the Private Pilot program (PPL), which includes everything that an aspiring professional pilot will need to launch a successful commercial pilot career.
Samira Atallah is a Senior Research Scientist at the Center for Advanced Social Science Research and Senior Advisor, Regional Collaborative Seminars, at NYU Abu Dhabi Institute. Previously, she was the Regional Programme Coordinator at the Division for Arab States, Europe, and Central Asia of the United Nations Fund for Population. Prior to that she held various positions in the US and the Middle East, including as an assistant professor at the Social and Behavioral Sciences Department of Zayed University in the UAE, Director of Research on Development and Public Policy and Executive Director at the Lebanese Center for Policy Studies in Beirut, a Research Fellow at the Middle East and Middle Eastern American Centre of the Graduate Centre of the City University of New York, and a Lecturer at Boston University and at Tufts University. She was awarded the Post-Doctoral Fellowship of the University Professors Program of Boston University for the academic year 1997-1998. Dr. Atallah has also been a consultant and advisor for UNDP, the World Bank, the World Health Organization, the Center of Arab Women for Training and Research, among others. Her research interests include the intersection between public policy and social change in the Middle East, particularly in the context of conflict and inequality; and the role of civil society and international development organizations in addressing gender issues and socio-economic disparities. She completed her undergraduate education at the Lebanese American University and Harvard University and her graduate studies at Boston University, where she earned an MA in International Relations and a PhD in Political Economy and Development.
Ibrahim Awad is a graduate of the Faculty of Economics and Political Science, University of Cairo, and holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Geneva, Switzerland. He has researched and published in Arabic, English, French and Spanish in political economy, employment, international labour migration, human and labour rights, international relations, international organization, and regional integration. He has held positions with regional and United Nations organizations in Argentina, Spain, Switzerland, Lebanon and Egypt, including, as Director of International Migration Programme at the International Labour Organization (ILO) Headquarters in Geneva from 2005-2010; as Director of the Sub-regional Office of the ILO for North Africa in Cairo from 2001-2005; and as Secretary of the Commission at the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) from 1999-2001.
Dr. Awad is a member of boards and scientific councils of several institutions, programmes, and projects related to research on development, migration, and human rights. At present, he is Professor of Public Policy at the American University in Cairo (AUC), School of Global Affairs and Public Policy. He has also been recently appointed the Director of the Center for Migration and Refugee Studies (CMRS), American University in Cairo (AUC), effective in December 2010. His most recent publications include: ¿La question de l¿emploi entre la recherche arabe et les institutions financieres internationals,¿ in Les sciences sociales en voyage. L¿Afrique du Nord et le Moyen-Orient vus d¿Europe, d¿Amerique et de l¿interieur, sous la direction d¿Eberahrd Kienle. Paris, IREMAM-CARTHALA, 2010; International Migration in Africa, Guest editor of the special theme of the African Yearbook of International Law, 2009, Leiden, Brill/Martinus Nijhoff, 2010; ¿Introduction: Concepts, Practice and Policies of International Migration in Africa,¿ in Ibid; The Global Economic Crisis and Migrant Workers: Impact and Response. Geneva, ILO, 2009; and ¿Migration and Human Security in the Arab Region,¿ Background paper prepared for the Arab Human Development Report, 2009: Challenges to Human Security in the Arab Countries. New York, UNDP, 2009.
Nadereh Chamlou is Senior Advisor to the Chief Economist for the Middle East and North Africa Region of the World Bank. In her 29 years with the World Bank, she has worked in technical, advisory, and managerial positions across the organization in such areas as economic management, private and financial sector development, infrastructure and environment, corporate governance, and the knowledge economy. Her experience also extends to Latin America, East Asia and Pacific, and Eastern Europe. She co-authored a World Bank flagship report, "Corporate Governance: A Framework for Implementation," in 1999, and was co-founder of the World Bank/OECD-sponsored Global Corporate Governance Forum, which she headed from 1998 to 2000. She was the principal author of "Gender and Development in the Middle East and North Africa Region¿Women in the Public Sphere" in 2003, and of "The Environment for Women's Entrepreneurship in the Middle East and North Africa Region" in 2008.
Ms. Chamlou is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Tunis-based Center for Arab Women's Training and Research (CAWTAR); a founding member of the Steering Committee and the Advisory Committee of the Gender Economic Research and Policy Analysis (GERPA) initiative and Chair of the Friends of the Margaret McNamara Memorial Fund, a scholarship fund for women from developing countries. She was Adjust Professor at New York University¿s Wagner School of Public Policy and is a member of the International Steering Committee of Nyenrode, The Netherlands Business University. She was a member of the scientific committee of the Dutch Gender Task Force--24orMore. She is a graduate of Georgetown's School of Foreign Service and the Graduate School for Economics.
May Al Dabbagh
May Al-Dabbagh is the Founder and Director of the Gender and Public Policy Program at Dubai School of Government where she has taught and published on variety of topics including cross- cultural and social/organizational psychology; theory and method in assessing the relationship between the self and context; cultural and gender differences in leadership, decision-making, and job-related outcomes. Al-Dabbagh is also the DSG faculty chair for women and leadership development programs. Since 2007, Al-Dabbagh has been a research associate with Harvard University¿s Dubai Initiative and is currently heading a multiyear research project on ¿Intersections between culture and gender in negotiation¿ which focuses on gender and globalization in negotiation in the Gulf Cooperative Council Countries.
In 2006, Dr. Al-Dabbagh earned a Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology from the University of Oxford. She earned her B.A. degree in psychology from Harvard University, where she graduated in 1999 with high honors. She is a member of the World Economic Forum¿s Global Agenda Council on the Women¿s Empowerment and has been an active board member with the Harvard Arab Alumni Association (HAAA) and has organized and chaired a variety of public forums in Saudi Arabia and the GCC in her capacity as regional director. In 2010, she was appointed to the board of the Harvard Alumni Association (HAA) as the Director for the Middle East and Africa region.
Mohamad Dito received a Master of Science in Economics from the University of Economy ¿Bruno Leuschner" in Berlin in 1988. Between 1989 and 1996 he held several management positions within the private sector. In 1996 he became superintendent of the Employment Service Bureau (ESB) at the Ministry of Labour-Bahrain and in 1998 became the head of the employment service bureau at the ministry, a post he held until 2005 when he became the policy development manager at the Bahrain Labour Market Regulatory Authority where he is currently involved in policy advice and research.
Mr. Dito participated in a wide range of conferences, symposia and seminars organized by the International Labour Organization (ILO). He was a member of the committee reviewing ILO's conventions on child labour in 1999, as a speaker in the ILO sub-regional seminar on employment promotion of nationals in the GCC states in 2003, and as a trainer assigned by the ILO to conduct a training course for Jordanian officials in 2006, to name a few. He has authored and coauthored several articles and research papers on employment issues in the EU, the GCC and Arab countries. Mr. Dito speaks English and German in addition to his native Arabic.
Michael Ewers is an Assistant Professor of Geography at Texas A&M University and a specialist on regional economic development in the Arab Gulf States. His research focuses on issues of labor migration and labor markets, knowledge transfer, and structural economic change. Ewers' research in the Gulf States has been funded through the Fulbright-Hays program (US Department of Education), the Social Science Research Council and the Mershon Center for International Security Studies. Ewers' publications include articles in Progress in Human Geography, GeoJournal, and Tijdschrift voor Economische en Sociale Geografie, and a chapter in the edited volume, Engineering Earth: The Impacts of Megaengineering Projects. He currently resides in College Station, Texas, and can be contacted at email@example.com.
François Farah was appointed UNFPA Representative for Romania and Country Director for Macedonia, Moldova and Serbia in November 2009. In January 2010 he was further appointed UN Designated Official responsible for all UN Personnel and Property Security in Romania. Mr. Farah had been on Special Leave of Absence without Pay (SLOWP) from the UN for one year to work as Senior Advisor on Social Development for a Dubai Holding Group. Prior to that, he was Chief, Social Development Division at the UN Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (UN ESCWA) in Beirut-Lebanon, from June 2006 till May 2008. Before that, he assumed the post of Chief, UNFPA¿s Population and Development Branch in New York for two and a half years. Prior to that, Mr. Farah was UNFPA Resident Representative/Head of Mission over ten years in a number of countries including India, Pakistan and Uganda, and Country Director for Cameroon, Bhutan and Afghanistan. In that capacity, he engaged in policy dialogue with governments and development partners regarding their development strategies, managed large UN offices and budgets, and guided and implemented a myriad of programs in matters of economic, social policy and social development, population, gender, migrations and youth with support from the UN, governments, and other funding and philanthropic partners.
Prior to joining the UN System in early 1994 Mr. Farah worked with Canada¿s International Development Research Centre (IDRC) from August 1988 to March 1994 in different capacities as Regional Programme Officer, Senior Programme Officer and Project Director. He initiated and supervised action research and development projects in education, health, youth, ageing, census and social surveys, gender, migration, refugees and community development in the Middle East, North Africa, West Africa and South and Southeast Asia. Before that, he was Associate Professor, taught at several universities in Lebanon for eight years, supervised and carried out research and consultancies and worked for International Organizations in Lebanon and Western Asia on population and social and economic development, health, gender, social cultural change, migration and refugees, from October 1979 to July 1988. Dr. Farah obtained his Doctorate in Social Demography at the French Sorbonne Rene-Descartes, Paris V in May 1979. He is fluent in Arabic, English and French and has working knowledge in Spanish. He has written and published in the three languages a number of studies, papers and articles on a range of social policy and social development, gender, culture, youth, and migration and population issues. Dr. Farah was born in Lebanon and was later naturalized Canadian.
Ingo Forstenlechner is a senior adviser at the Federal Demographic Council in Abu Dhabi and an Assistant Professor at United Arab Emirates University. He received his PhD from Cranfield University, and worked 5 years as a project manager for Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer. His research interests are in international human capital management, particularly on the intersection of expatriates and their relationship with and impact on the local workforce. Dr. Forstenlechner has written extensively on the topic of localization of the workforce in Arabian Gulf countries, his work has been published in e.g. Journal of World Business, The International Journal of Human Resource Management, Middle East Policy, Personnel Review, or Public Policy and Administration.
Steffen Hertog is a Lecturer at the London School of Economics. He was previously Kuwait Professor at Sciences Po Pairs, lecturer at the University of Durham, and a post-doctoral research fellow at Princeton University. His main research interest lies in Gulf and Middle East political economy, with special focus on public sector reform and state-business relations. Dr. Hertog has worked with numerous public and private institutions in the Gulf region. His book ¿Princes, brokers, and bureaucrats: oil and state in Saudi Arabia¿ has been published by Cornell University Press in 2010.
Habibul Haque Khondker
Habibul Haque Khondker has been a professor at the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences of Zayed University since 2006. Previously, he was Research Associate at the Asia Research Institute of National University of Singapore (2005-2006), a Senior Lecturer at the Department of Sociology of the National University of Singapore (1992 - 1998), Lecturer a the Department of Sociology of the National University of Singapore (1985 - 1992), and Adjunct Faculty at the Department of Sociology of the University of Pittsburgh (1984-85). He has also worked as a Researcher at the World Bank Project, World Fertility Survey, Dhaka and held various teaching assistant positions at the University of Pittsburgh, Carleton University, and University of Dhaka. Dr. Khondker has been a visiting professor and visiting scholar at the United Nations University, Cornell University, Columbia University, Institute of Social Studies, and University of Pittsburgh. He has been the recipient of several research grants, including most recently from the National Research Foundation to conduct research on Labor Migration in UAE. Dr. Khondker holds a PhD n Sociology from the University of Pittsburgh, an MA in Sociology of Development and Political Sociology from Carleton University, and an MA in Social Thought and Theories from the University of Dhaka, Bangladesh.
Nada Al-Nashif was appointed ILO Regional Director for the Arab States in January 2007. During her tenure she has prioritized the roll-out of Decent Work Country Programmes across the region with particular emphasis on enhanced employment policies; support to entrepreneurship culture; social dialogue mechanisms with vibrant workers¿ and employers¿ engagement; and promoted enhanced social protection for all. Continuing support to constituents in the Arab world has been at the core of the Regional Office¿s results-based programming that integrates UN Reform initiatives and expanded partnerships approaches.
Ms. Al-Nashif joined the ILO after a distinguished career with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) where she started in 1991. Ms. Al-Nashif holds a Masters in Public Policy (MPP) from the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University and a BA in Philosophy, Politics & Economics (PPE) from Balliol College, Oxford University. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of ImagineNations Group (USA) and as Chair of the Knowledge Consortium of Silatech (Qatar). Ms. Al-Nashif is also member of the Advisory Board at the Institute for Strategic Dialogue, Weidenfeld Scholarships and Leadership Programme (UK).
Sultan Sooud Al Qassemi
Sultan Sooud Al Qassemi was elected as the Chairman of Young Arab Leaders (YAL), UAE chapter, in July 2008; YAL is an independent, not-for-profit organization, founded in 2004 whose mission is to assist in the empowerment of the youth of the Arab world and develop the human capital of the region. Mr. Al Qassemi is a columnist for The National newspaper in Abu Dhabi. His columns have appeared in Britain's The Financial Times, The Independent and The Guardian, America¿s The Huffington Post, India's The Hindu, Lebanon's Daily Star, London's International Institute For Strategic Studies, Dubai's Gulf Business, and Saudi Arabia's Arab News amongst others. He is also a non-resident Fellow at the Dubai School of Government. Mr. Al Qassemi holds a Masters Degree in Global Banking and Finance from the European Business School in London and a Bachelors Degree in International Business Administration from the American University of Paris.
Rima Sabban is currently working as an Assistant Professor of Sociology at Zayed University. She is academically active in areas of feminization of migration, labor and the Gulf region. She took part in multiple research projects in the MENA region such as: the UNDP (Vulnerabilities and Health Risks faced by Female Migrant Workers moving from Asia to the Arab States); Amsterdam University (supervising as a Post-Doctorate research on Migration between Kerala and Dubai); ILO (Migrant Domestic Workers in the UAE); Dubai Municipality (Policy study of Women in Dubai based on the analysis of the Dubai General Population Census). Dr. Sabban has previously served as head of the Department of General Education at the University of Dubai, and was dean of student affairs at the American University of Sharja. She is the author of Motherhood: Experiences of an Arab Woman and co-author of ¿General Socio-Political Tends and Perceptions of Youth in the GCC Countries¿ and a number of Papers on Globalization, Gulf civil society, labor, women, youth, childhood, among others. Active in the UAE community; she is quoted in Arabic and English Media.
Nasra M. Shah
Nasra M. Shah is Professor of Demography at the Department of Community Medicine and Behavioral Sciences at the Faculty of Medicine, Kuwait University. She received her doctoral degree in Population Dynamics from the Johns Hopkins University, School of Public Health, Baltimore, USA. Before joining Faculty of Medicine at Kuwait University in 1988 she worked in Hawaii, USA and Pakistan. Among her varied research interests, labor migration, especially from Asian countries to the oil-rich Gulf countries, has been a consistent theme for more than 35 years. She co-edited a book on Asian Labor Migration: Pipeline to the Middle East in 1986 and has published more than 40 articles on various migration topics. During the mid 1990s, she was part of an IOM/UNFPA global project on emigration dynamics in 4 major sending regions. She was Chairperson of the South Asia region. Her research has focused on the perspective of sending as well as receiving countries, socioeconomic profiles and economic progress of migrant workers, domestic worker migration, violence against women migrants, increasingly restrictive policies of receiving countries, irregular migration, and the role of social networks in the migration process. Dr. Sabban is a member of the International Advisory Board of the 2010 World Migration Report by IOM, and is on the Editorial Board of the Asia and Pacific Migration Journal, International Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health, and the Pakistan Development Review. Dr. Shah has also worked on the role of social factors in infant and child mortality; predictors of fertility and contraceptive use; women¿s role and status; utilization of health services; and the importance of social networks in psychosocial health of older persons. Her many publications include books on Pakistani Women, Asian Labor Migration, Basic Needs, Women and Development, and Population of Kuwait: Structure and Dynamics.
Ibrahim Saif is an economist, he obtained his PhD from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) ¿ University of London. Dr. Saif has taught at both the University of London and Yale University, where he offered courses on the Economies of the Middle East. He is currently the Secretary General of the Economic and Social Council in Jordan. Previously, he served as a Director of the Center for Strategic Studies (University of Jordan) and worked as a Resident Scholar at the Carnegie Middle East Center in Beirut. He is a fellow with the Economic Research Forum and a member of the Global Development Network.
Mohammed Al-Waqfi is an Assistant Professor of Human Resources Management in the College of Business and Economics at the United Arab Emirates University. He holds a Master's degree in economics and a Ph.D. in human resource management from McMaster University. Dr. Al-Waqfi published research in human resource management, employment equity, and cross-cultural management. He is currently conducting research on cultural diversity and labor policy and workforce localization issues in the GCC region. Before joining the UAE University, he taught at McMaster University and Acadia University in Canada.
Eckart Woertz is a Visiting Fellow at Princeton University and a consultant on food security, energy and financial issues in the Middle East. Up till very recently (November 2010) he has been Director of Economic Studies at the Gulf Research Center (GRC) in Dubai/ UAE and has held senior positions in financial services companies in Germany and the UAE, amongst them Delbrück & Co one of the oldest German private banks. Dr. Woertz is a regular contributor and commentator to major international and regional newspapers and TV channels. Since 2008 food inflation in the Gulf and GCC agro-investments abroad have been special interests of his. He holds an MA in Middle Eastern Studies and a PhD in Economics from Friedrich-Alexander University, Erlangen-Nuremberg, where he conducted research about structural adjustment politics in Egypt.
Lawrence L. Wu
Lawrence L. Wu is on the faculty of New York University, where he is Professor of Sociology, Director of the Center for Advanced Social Science Research, and Deputy Director of the Institute of Human Development and Social Change. He has been at NYU since 2003, and was previously at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Princeton University. Professor Wu is a recognized authority on nonmarital fertility, with his research in this area having received funding from NICHD, NSF, and the William T. Grant Foundation.
Jamel Zarrouk is Chief of Research & Studies Division at the Abu Dhabi-based Arab Monetary Fund (AMF). He is responsible for managing the Fund¿s policy research and studies programs, as well as cooperating with the international and regional financial and development institutions in the areas of applied research in best practices for Arab countries in economic reforms. Dr. Zarrouk is also a part-time advisor on MENA trade and investment issues to the World Bank, and to various GCC government agencies.
Prior to joining the AMF, Dr. Zarrouk was an international trade economist with the US Treasury Department and worked for the Saudi Arabian Ministry of Finance and National Economy. He also taught international trade theory and policy at the University of Colorado at Boulder where he received his Ph.D. in Economics, in 1987.
Dr. Zarrouk, a citizen of Tunisia (by birth) and the USA, has published in professional journals, the World Bank and IMF publications dealing especially with economic reforms in the areas of liberalization of trade & investment policies, trade & employment, the economics of regional economic integration (GCC Common Market, PAFTA & the Euro-Med Partnership Agreements), international transactions in services, and the multilateral trading system of the WTO.