Gender in Agriculture Partnership

Transforming agriculture to empower women and deliver food, nutrition and income security

ICBA partners with Gates Foundation and Islamic Development Bank to pilot pioneering leadership program for Arab women scientists

The International Center for Biosaline Agriculture (ICBA) has joined forces with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) to pilot a novel leadership program for Arab women scientists in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.

Targeting Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Palestine, Tunisia and the UAE, Tamkeen is an initiative focused on addressing a wide range of challenges facing Arab women scientists, and empowering them to become future leaders in science.

As the first event under this program, ICBA hosted a seminal training course for a group of researchers at its head office in Dubai, UAE, on 23-27 April.

Delivered in partnership with the African Women in Agriculture Research and Development (AWARD) program, the course brought together participants from Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman and Palestine. It helped to equip them with knowledge to enhance their leadership skills and act as change agents within their institutions and communities.

Opening the course, Dr. Ismahane Elouafi, Director General of ICBA, said: “I am extremely happy that ICBA is successfully hosting the first-ever pilot training course under Tamkeen, on which I would like to congratulate each participant and the organizers. Arab women researchers need to have more opportunities to improve their scientific and leadership skills, and network with their peers around the world. Through Tamkeen, I am confident that ICBA along with its partners will be able to help Arab women scientists to identify their strengths and become successful leaders in science.”

Highlighting the importance of investing in women’s empowerment in research, Zahira El Marzouki, Program Officer at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, said: “This pilot training course represents a significant milestone in our partnership with ICBA and IsDB to support Arab women scientists to become tomorrow’s leaders in agriculture research and find solutions to some of the region’s biggest food security challenges. The caliber of the participants is extremely impressive, and we look forward to continuing our relationship with them as they progress through their careers.”

“IsDB’s approach to development is ensuring capacity development for the citizens of our member countries. By building the capacity of Arab women scientists, we are putting the right pillars for the development of our societies. This initiative will go a long way in supporting Arab women researchers to be more productive, innovative and contribute to the development of their countries,” said Mr. Zaher Rebai, IsDB’s Director, Capacity Development Department.

For the full story, visit the ICBA website