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HRH Prince Hassan Bin Talal: Learning must contribute in building enlightened human thought

  HRH Prince Hassan Bin Talal: Learning must contribute in building enlightened human thought
Dr. Adnan Badran: Arab World needs 100 million jobs by 2022
HRH Prince Hassan Bin Talal emphasized that learning, from the childhood until the end of the university stage, must result in building enlightened thought that is based on intellectual and political pluralism, respect for diversity in religions and beliefs, opinion and freedom of expression, resorting to dialogue to resolve political, economic and social problems and getting rid of human freedom impediments.
Speaking on behalf of the Former Prime Minister Dr. Adnan Badran in the opening session of the Conference entitled “Higher Education in the Arab World: Realities & Challenges”, HRH Prince Hassan asserted that learning must lead to unleash thought, enhance creativity and innovation and scientific research, build knowledge and human capital, achieve self-reliance, empowerment of poor segments, improve income, achieve better living conditions, strengthen the Arab dignity and respect for pluralism.
The Conference was organized by the Jordan Academicians Society (JAS) in cooperation with the Arab Thought Forum and the Union of Arab Universities.
HRH Prince Hassan called for adapting higher education outputs to market needs and establishing startups financed by business incubators to convert research outcomes into successful projects.
HRH Prince Hassan highlighted the need for improving abilities, focusing on learning rather than teaching, giving greater space to thinking and exercising talents, joining technical and vocational programs and developing human resources in a balanced manner that meets the needs of all academic, technical and professional segments.
HRH Prince Hassan called for allocating more space for university administration and governance in a way to lead to forming partnerships with all higher education players based on eligibility, competence and equal opportunities and preparing leaderships who are concerned with education economics, excellence, and creative thinking.
HRH Prince Hassan noted that Learning must develop the sense of citizenship and that individuals' rights and duties under the constitution or law must be ensured and engagement of all segments without discrimination or exclusion. "Citizenship, here, means opening opportunities according to merit criteria to transform from tax-imposing economy to productive economy to enable individuals to excel and innovate," HRH Prince Hassan added.
HRH Prince Hassan called for directing young people to focus on sciences, humanize sciences, and bridge the gap between thought and emotions to achieve balance between mind and heart.
“Regrettably, advanced countries started to view migration negatively, overlooking that it is the most important factor in the success of the advanced countries scientifically, industrially, agriculturally and socially. Quality education programs must be developed for refugees to integrate, work, and not join extremist groups. International organizations develop mechanisms to protect them,” HRH Prince Hassan added.
HRH Prince Hassan called for following the recommendations of World Science Forum (Science for Peace) held in the Dead Sea and hosted by the Royal Scientific Society of Jordan, together with UNESCO, the Hungarian Academy of Science, the International Council for Science, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. The forum covered the interrelated scientific triangle for energy, water and food security to achieve the sustainable development in the Arab World. HRH Prince Hassan added that Arab researchers must encounter these challenges, eradicate poverty and unemployment and reinforcing freedoms.
Dr. Adnan Badran said: “Despite the number of the accredited universities increased, human development and sustainable development was not positively impacted in the Arab World, but the unemployment rates rose as they did not keep pace with job market needs”.
Dr. Badran referred to the challenges facing educational reform in the Arab World, notably administration and governance, saying if they were dealt with effectively, it will lead to optimal investment in the university abilities, preparing highly-qualified human resources and encountering economic challenges.
Dr. Badran stressed that universities must adopt merit criteria in admission, recruitment, promotion, regularization of staff, scholarships and converting research outputs into creative solutions with the support of business incubators.
Dr. Badran addressed the indicators of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) that outlined that the Arab World needs 100 million jobs by 2022, 25% of young people are unemployed and 8 million young people are studying, compared to 200 million university students last year.
The Chairman of the Board of Directors at JAS, Khalid Al Omari, clarified that the two-day conference consists of several sessions on higher education in the Arab World and Jordan and mechanisms to address the challenges of not reaching Universalism.
Dr. Maria Helena, the Secretary General of the Union of European Universities, stressed the need to “adopt developmental educational strategies based on the economic reality of countries — especially considering the knowledge revolution that the world is currently witnessing”.
Dr. Helena outlined that low scientific research levels due to low financial allocations lead to negatively impacting sustainable development.
Several educational experts from Jordan, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Iraq participated in the Conference.