The headquarters of the Islamic World Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ICESCO) in Rabat, on Friday, September 3, 2021, hosted the first consultative meeting to discuss the situation of the Federation of the Universities of the Islamic World (FUIW) and its future prospects to fulfill its role in light of the rapid global transformations and the ongoing technological development.
The meeting brought together Dr. Driss Ouaouicha, Delegate Minister in charge of Higher Education and Scientific Research in of Morocco, Dr. Salim M. Al Malik, ICESCO Director-General (DG), FUIW Secretary-General; the presidents of some Moroccan universities as well as several ICESCO officials and experts. The participants exchanged perspectives and proposals that offer innovative solutions to the current challenges facing the Federation.
At the outset of the meeting, Dr. Ouaouicha gave an address wherein he praised the roles and efforts of ICESCO in serving the universities of the Islamic world, stressing the need to benefit from the accumulated experiences to develop strategic plans, action plans and performance assessment mechanisms to ensure a better future for the Federation.
In his address, Dr. AlMalik stressed that the meeting is the beginning of a series of meetings with member universities to explore their vision about the Federation’s future, explaining that the FUIW must be the effective tool for enhancing cooperation between universities to advance to the ranks of international universities, taking into account the recommendation of the twenty-third session of the Executive Council of the Federation, held in Sharjah, on 02-03 February 2020, to develop a new vision for the Federation to renew its working mechanisms and define its future roles to have a fresh start.
Dr. Omar Halli, Advisor to ICESCO Director-General for the Federation of the Universities of the Islamic World, gave a presentation wherein he explained that the Federation includes 351 universities from 58 countries. He also highlighted the most prominent stations of the FUIW since its inception in 1987, its working mechanisms, the recent developments, and the update of the Federation’s website.
The floor was then given to the heads of universities, who raised many questions about the roles and achievements of the Federation. They also made many suggestions to promote the role of the Federation to be a locomotive of cooperation and coordination between universities in Muslim countries. The heads of universities included Dr. Awatef Hayar, President of Hassan II University, Dr. Mohamed Ghachi, President of Mohammed V University, Dr. Amin Bensaid, President of Al Akhawayn University, Dr. Mustafa Bousmina, President of Euro-Mediterranean University, and Dr. Abdelaziz Benjouad, Vice President of the International University of Rabat.
In their interventions, Dr. AlMalik, Dr. Abdelilah Benarafa, and some ICESCO officials responded to all those questions and clarified the background of the establishment of the FUIW, its roles and its relationship with ICESCO.
At the close of the meeting, the participants made several recommendations, which will be formulated and discussed during the upcoming meetings with the member universities of the Federation.