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From Kinetic to Cyber and Back Again:

Technology and Peacemaking in the Arab World 


This session is held in the framework of the 2020 Virtual Stockholm Forum on Peace and Development

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Date:   21 May 2020

Time:   13:00-14:00

Online:  Zoom Platform

Registration here

Peace is more than the interruption of conflict--it is a way of thinking. In order to generate and maintain peaceful relations between hostile states and/or substate groups and in order to prevent conflict recurrence, social learning must precede change. This online roundtable looks a t how social media and innovative technologies are able to affect social healing in war-torn states across the Middle East and to teach by doing. While this online roundtable is primarily focused on some of the larger conflicts afflicting the region (re: Syria, Libya, Yemen) it also looks to some regional models that may be emulated (re: Jordan, Bahrain, the UAE etc.). Drawing on regional expertise, this roundtable seeks to show both the positive and negative aspects to cyber engagements: to reinforce the former and interrupt the latter. Since, ultimately, there are always hands behind a keyboard this session aims to bridge the kinetic-cyber gap in conflict management and cession. 

EGIC would like to bring scholars, practitioners and the interested public together to engage this issue. It is hoped to create both the momentum and network to further develop cyber roads of understanding -- followed by kinetic engagements -- and therefore contribute to peaceful solutions to Middle Eastern conflicts. 



  • Fatima Abo Alasrar: Non-Resident Scholar at the Middle East Institute. Before joining the Institute, Alasrar was a Senior Analyst at the Arabia Foundation in Washington DC, MENA Director for Cure Violence. Fatima worked as International Policy Fellow at the Open Society Foundation, as an advisor for the Embassy of Yemen in Washington, DC. Earlier in her career, Alasrar served as a program officer for the Department for International Development (DFID) in Yemen. 

  • Aya Burweila: Born in Benghazi, Libya, Aya is the founder and Head of Operations of Code on the Road in Athens and Amman (NO PROFIT Organisation that implement and promote a holistic approach to solving today’s labour market and civil society deficits in both Europe and the MENA regionand) a BBC Expert Woman in Terrorism and Radicalization. Prior to establishing Code on the Road, she was the head of Research & Public Policy at Solidarity Now, an Athens-based NGO active nation-wide in the field of human rights. 

  • Mitchell Belfer: Mitchell Belfer is currently President of the Euro-Gulf Information Centre (Rome, Italy), Senior Lecturer in International Relations, Terrorism and Security at the Metropolitan University Prague (Czech Republic) and Editor in Chief of the Central European Journal of International and Security Studies. He also sits on the Steering Committee of the Global Institute for Cybersecurity Technologies among other editorial, research and scientific boards. 

  • Moderator Arthur De Liedekerke: External Affairs Office at CERT-EU (European Commission, Brussels).

About the Stockholm Forum

Held annually, the Stockholm Forum is a dialogue-driven event that provides a neutral platform for interdisciplinary exchange among members of international communities in the development, humanitarian, peacebuilding and security spheres. The discussion-led roundtable sessions—which the Stockholm Forum is well-known for—are developed in collaboration with partner organizations and invite active participation from stakeholders at all levels.

Reflecting developments in the international policy agenda, each edition of the Stockholm Forum has had a different overarching theme, ranging from ‘Freedom from Violence’ in 2014 to the themes of ‘What Works?’ in 2017 and ‘The Politics of Peace’ in 2018. Continuing this trend, the theme for Forum 2019 was ‘From Crisis Response to Peacebuilding: Achieving Synergies’ and for 2020 the theme is ‘Sustaining Peace in the Time of COVID-19’.

The Stockholm Forum on Peace and Development has been jointly organized by the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs and SIPRI since 2014. 

More Info here.

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