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Symposium 2013

Solution for The Future of the Arab World

The Challenge

In December 2010, as its outset, the Arab Spring was non-ideological and leaderless. In many respects, it seemed to be the product of a “generational revolution”: 100 million young Arabs were risi ...

In December 2010, as its outset, the Arab Spring was non-ideological and leaderless. In many respects, it seemed to be the product of a “generational revolution”: 100 million young Arabs were rising against stifling economic and political structures that had stripped them of their freedoms while giving them in return one of the poorest education systems in the world, the highest unemployment rate together with a yawning income gap. Both Tunisia and Egypt demonstrated that rapid economic growth does not buy political stability unless political institutions and public governance are allowed to mature equally rapidly.

Create 'national dialogue tables' between opposing religious and political factions in the Arab world

Political instability, sometimes based on religion, compromises the economic development of the Arab region. The 90 former heads of state and government of the Club de Madrid can act as powerful and neutral facilitators for squabbling factions to reach accommodation. This can be combined with a campaign to use inclusive passages of the Koran to build bridges between Islamic sects and other religions. In all cases, outsiders should facilitate and demonstrate models from other regions but not dictate. Civil society organizations should also play a major role.

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