“De-development: Can the Downward Spiral in the Arab World Be Reversed?”, a Conversation with Dr Rima Khalaf

  • DATE / TIME:
    2018•10•25    18:30 - 19:30

    On 25 October 2018, UNU will host De-development: Can the Downward Spiral in the Arab World Be Reversed?”, a conversation with Dr Rima Khalaf, former Under-Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA). This event will start at 6:30 p.m. at UNU Headquarters in Tokyo.

    The Arab world is an economically incongruent region. It includes some of the least and most prosperous Member States of the world. Conflict/peace, raw materials, and politics dominate and determine the fluctuating prospects of development in the region. Once developed states can succumb to the shocks of conflict and resemble little of their former stable selves. On the other hand, the sudden discovery of raw materials can elevate once struggling states. Recently, conflicts, politics, and markets (i.e. oil prices) have propelled most of the region into a downward spiral. What is the impact of the current conflicts on present and future development? How can the region leverage its rich endowment of natural resources and reverse the ongoing negative trend?

    Dr Rima Khalaf will join UNU Rector David M. Malone for a conversation assessing the development and prospects of a region blessed by vast amounts of natural resources, but also beset by divisive conflicts and politics.

    The UNU Conversation Series aims to foster audience participation: you are encouraged to engage with the speakers during the conversation and at the reception that will follow, where all audience members are invited to enjoy the food and drinks that will be served while exchanging ideas and making new contacts.

    Please note that this event will be in English only; Japanese interpretation will not be provided. Advance registration (by 24 October) is required. Please click on the REGISTER button above to access the online registration page.

    About the speaker

    Dr Rima Khalaf has served in several leadership positions in the United Nations and for the Government of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, including as its Deputy Prime Minister. Most recently, she served as Executive Secretary of ESCWA. Previously, she was Assistant Secretary-General and Director of the Regional Bureau of Arab States of UNDP. Dr. Khalaf has been the recipient of numerous international prizes for her work on promoting good governance, human rights, and human development. Notably, in recognition of her regional initiatives in education, women’s rights, civic engagement and economic growth she received an honorary degree from the American University of Cairo.

    Dr Khalaf holds a Bachelor’s in Economics from the American University of Beirut, and a Master’s in Economics and a Doctorate in System Science from Portland State University. She is married and has two children.


    2F Reception Hall
    United Nations University
    53-70, Jingumae 5-chome
    Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 150-8925