MERI and Department of Coordination and Follow-Up discuss areas of reform and collaboration

“Collaboration with MERI is most welcome, as we share the same objective for reforming the system of governance in Kurdistan Region”, said Minister Noori Othman, Head of the Department of Coordination and Follow-up of Kurdistan Regional Government (DCF-KRG).

In an official visit by MERI staff to the DCF-KRG office in Erbil, the two sides agreed to initiate a number of collaborative engagements in support of the reform process in a number of KRG ministries.  Dr. Noori Othman introduced his staff who presented summaries of their diverse projects.  They highlighted areas of challenge and prospects of achieving progress.  They also identified certain projects that DCF had in common with MERI.

“Government institutions should remain focused on good governance”

Professor Dlawer Ala’Aldeen, President of MERI, commended the young and energetic staff that has shown a high level of competence and enthusiasm despite the difficulties they face.  He reiterated that both institutions can work together to influence change and the decision-making process within the KRG, at the highest level.  MERI’s academic and impartial approach was valued by the host and welcomed to add pressure on Government institutions so that they remain focused on good governance. Prof. Ala’Aldeen also stressed the importance of studying the challenges and offering solutions that are tailor-made for Kurdistan’s culture of governance and its power dynamics.

The two sides agreed to focus on priority areas for specific collaborative projects, including, quality assurance in administration and performance management in key institutions. The two sides will sign a memorandum of understanding that includes open access of staff to each other’s resources.

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About MERI:  The Middle East Research Institute is Iraq’s leading policy-research institute and think tank. It is an independent, entirely grant-funded not-for-profit organisation, based in Erbil, Kurdistan Region.  Its mission is to contribute to the process of nation-building, state-building and democratisation via engagement, research, analysis and policy debates.

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MERI’s main objectives include promoting and developing human rights, good governance, the rule of law and social and economic prosperity. MERI conduct high impact, high quality research (including purpose-based field work) and has published extensively in areas of: human rights, government reform, international politics, national security, ISIS, refugees, IDPs, minority rights (Christians, Yezidis, Turkmen, Shabaks, Sabi mandeans), Baghdad-Erbil relations, Hashd Al-Shabi, Peshmarga, violence against women, civil society. MERI engages policy- and decision-makers, the civil society and general public via publication, focused group discussions and conferences (MERI Forum).

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