Posted on December 16, 2018

The World Innovation Summit for Education (WISE), an initiative of Qatar Foundation (QF), recently participated in the second ‘Belt and Road Education Dialogue’ in Beijing, China.

The event explored research, policy, and opportunities for the cooperation of countries along the historical belt and road route stretching across Europe, Africa, and Asia. Dr. Ahmed Baghdady, Manager of Research and Content Development, WISE, presented and participated in a panel discussion on research, innovation, and sustainability, discussing relevant local education insights he has gathered.

“Qatar has made significant efforts to modernize its education system over the past two decades, but these globalization efforts face societal calls for localization and the preservation of the Arabic language and heritage,” he said. “Therefore, education in Qatar combines aspects of globalization with aspects of localization that address contextual needs of the society.” Discussing opportunities for collaboration, Dr. Baghdady added: “This gathering is very important for sharing knowledge and views on education reform and improvement among countries on the historical Silk Belt and Road. I have realized that we share a lot in common regardless of the differences among the individual countries. We all seek better education for our children which will ensure a better future for our societies.”

The panel was moderated by Jin Xin, President of Tianjin Education Research, and included Chu Hongqi, Chancellor of Beijing Open University;  Shi Gendong, Executive Director of the Sustainable Development Education Committee; and Orkhon Gantogtokh, Executive Director of the Mongolian Academy for Education Development. In the first Belt and Road conference in 2017, WISE gave a presentation on the topic of student mobility and higher education, an area of significant interest in China. This research was continued after the conference by a joint publication on teacher development and training, titled ‘A Multi-Country Study on the Education of Migrant Children’, with WISE sharing Qatar-based research on this topic.

WISE also participated in other aspects of the conference, including Elyas Felfoul, Director of Policy and Partnerships, who was invited to judge the Belt and Road Global Startup competition, ‘YES! Startup Chengdu 2018.’  This was followed by a panel on ‘Globalization, Entrepreneurship, Startup and Social Changes,’ moderated by David Kovacs, Director of Chengdu Shuangliu Innovation & Pioneering Enterprise Services Co. Ltd., and included Ngwako Ramohlale, CEO of Nunnovation Africa Foundation; Andrea Gelfi, President of JEUNE; and Bernardo Mendia, Vice-President of Sino PLPE.