By Spring 2020, amid continuing echoes of the popular dissent that first gave rise to the Arab Spring 10 years earlier, the Covid-19 pandemic was spreading rapidly across the Middle East and North Africa where some countries were still mired in longstanding internal conflicts and socio-economic distress.
Covid-19 has since reshaped regional plans and developments and undermined fragile national “social contracts,” whose weak economic foundations were at the same time buffeted by shifts in the global power balance.
Analysing transition from violence
The consequences of the interlocking social, economic, and public health challenges in the MENA region are still unfolding. But, their destabilizing combination tends to be yet another dreadful game-changer leading to new waves of dislocation, repression, and violence.
These conditions underscore the urgent need to analyze and learn from past strategies to prevent, contain, and transition from violence in MENA countries, and to highlight practices and approaches that lead to more constructive outcomes.
The crisis calls urgently upon experts in the social sciences and humanities to step forward with analysis, ideas, recommendations, and interventions that take into account the intricate mix of factors and conditions that lead to violence in any region.
8 expert conversations
To advance this goal the FMSH – Fondation Maison de sciences de l’homme, with the generous support of Carnegie Corporation of New York, is launching #IpevLive, a series of constructive expert conversations focused on achieving transitions from violence by understanding and applying lessons from the Middle East and North Africa.
#IpevLive will closely examine current challenges countries face from the perspective of social science, and engage significant regional stakeholders, including international organisations and representatives of civil society and academia, that have a role to play in addressing and preventing any further deterioration and to establish conditions that lead to more welcome outcomes, most critically, the reduction and elimination of conditions that promote violence and violence itself.
Three main themes will be addressed in one-hour panel discussion conducted weekly over the course of two months, namely:
- The long tail of the Arab Spring and its unresolved root causes.
- The MENA region post-covid
- Perspectives from the MENA region on future opportunities to exit violence
#IpevLive is organized with the support of the Carnegie Corporation of New York
IPEV sustainability partners