The 2018 annual MERI Forum brought together policy- and decision-makers, academics and opinion-leaders to share visions and solutions for a range of core issues and challenges that are facing the Middle East today, particularly in Iraq and Kurdistan. These include the ever-changing regional power dynamics, the perpetual security and political crises and pathways for the reformation of the governing system.
The conference themes and panels included:
- Overall framework and background (MERI’s opening)
- Reforming the governing system: Decentralisation and institutionalisation in Iraq (Panel 1).
- State-Building and Nation-Building in Iraq (Panel 2).
- Kurdistan in the New Middle East (Panel 3).
- EU in the Middle East: Responsive state-building to prevent violent extremism (Panel 4).
- Legitimate Stability in Iraq, and the role of the international community (Panel 5).
- Regional and Global Power dynamics in the Middle East: Conflict and Collaboration (Panel 6 and Panel 7).
* * * * *
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.
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).