IPCRI was founded on the principle that a joint partnership between Israeli and Palestinian intellectuals be established reflecting a conviction that peace-building must similarly be a joint and bi-partisan effort (assisted by the international community). IPCRI, with its active information activities and mixed thinking and planning forums is unique in that it is the only Israeli-Palestinian joint research center in the region. From the start it was based on what was then, and still is a unique premise: IPCRI should be a truly joint Israeli-Palestinian organization with its governance and management built on co-leadership. Consequently it was set up with a Board having two co-chairmen, a management with two co-directors and a joint Israeli-Palestinian staff in all projects and activities. In spite of the obvious complications inherent in this system it has been maintained throughout IPCRI’s existence.
In promoting its role and identity in the peace-building process IPCRI defines itself as a “think tank” and a “do tank” aimed at engaging Israelis and Palestinians of significance in a public peace process and at creating cooperation and interaction on an ongoing basis. During these times of complete political stalemate and impasse, IPCRI aims its political, analytical and strategic planning work at trying to bring about a resumption of the political process of direct internationally assisted Israeli-Palestinian negotiations. IPCRI seeks to advance high-level applied research and the development of public policy analyses and the development of policy proposals carried out in a cooperative manner on issues of conflict and joint concern. IPCRI makes efforts to include in its work individuals from four main centers of influence:
IPCRI is a multidisciplinary institute whose activities cover various areas where the two sides find themselves at loggerheads and where cooperation is necessary. Its major outputs result from joint endeavors of intellectual exploration, dialogue and research that deal with efforts of resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In previous years IPCRI’s efforts were directed largely at identifying and elaborating proposals for final status negotiations and possible agreements. During 2003 and 2004 IPCRI’s work is focused on current concerns - confronting how to resume a political process of negotiations and how to enable Israelis and Palestinians to re-engage as partners in peace.
IPCRI generates ideas and provides safe forums for Israelis and Palestinians to engage in creative problem-solving, exploring options and outlining solutions. Participants are encouraged to go beyond customary positions, investigate needs, concerns and fears and to discover mutual interests. They are challenged to give expression to the vital solutions that lie beneath old antagonisms.
IPCRI's approach is both head-on and hands-on. The belief is that Israelis and Palestinians have to confront the issues, propose a variety of alternative solutions, forward these to the responsible quarters and finally promote discussion on them among experts and the public. IPCRI is aware that often it is very difficult to rely solely on a bi-lateral process due to the high levels of antagonism and mistrust between the two sides and therefore has in recent years invited respected and credible third-parties to be involved with the ongoing work.
IPCRI is concerned with process as well as with final outcome. Not itself committed to any specific outcome within the two-state formula, IPCRI prefers to offer policy alternatives that are developed equally by the parties in cooperation, based on reciprocity and mutual obligation. IPCRI explores and develops policy options intended to benefit both sides and advance the political process as a whole. Generally results are channeled directly to the appropriate authorities and sometimes, when expedient, to the general public. Over the years IPCRI has produced detailed, pragmatic and implementable proposals on permanent status issues in conflict and is now focusing on the current deadlocked situation. IPCRI receives direct feedback to confirm that many of its proposals have been used to formulate public policies. IPCRI continues on a regular basis to offer the leadership of both sides running commentary, analyses and recommendations.
IPCRI engages in two broad areas strategies for its work:
Peacemaking and Peace building
Peacemaking refers to the “think-tank” analytical and development of public policy alternatives. This is achieved through bringing Israelis and Palestinians together for policy oriented discussions and planning aimed at creating policy alternatives for the leaders of Israel, Palestine and the international community in order to advance peace processes between them.
Peace building refers to the “do-tank” work of bringing Israelis and Palestinians together in cooperative programs aimed at developing greater understanding between them and at building constituencies for peace. Generally this work is carried out in programs on the environment, water and education for peace.
IPCRI Profile 2004
Founded: March 1988
Israel/Palestine Center for Research and Information - was launched in 1988 in order to promote dialogue at various levels between the Israeli and Palestinian civil societies aimed at advancing peace on the basis of the two-state solution. IPCRI was founded on the principle that through a joint partnership between Israeli and Palestinian intellectuals, academics, politicians, and professionals it would be possible to create and advance peaceful solutions to the issues in conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. IPCRI believes that there is great significance to cooperative efforts of peacemaking and peace building and that policies and programs designed and implemented jointly have a great potential to influence policy and decision makers in Israel, Palestine and in the international community.
IPCRI, with its active information activities and joint Israeli-Palestinian forums is unique in that it is the only Israeli-Palestinian joint research center in the region. From the start it was based on what was then, and still is, a unique premise: IPCRI is a truly joint Israeli-Palestinian organization with its governance and management built on co-leadership. In spite of the obvious complications inherent in this system it has been maintained throughout IPCRI’s existence.
Main Program Activities:
IPCRI’s activities are divided into three main program areas:
IPCRI Staff 2004
Dr. Gershon Baskin – Israeli Co-Director
Dr. Zakaria al Qaq – Palestinian Co-Director
Mr. Khaled Duzdar – Palestinian Co-Director, Strategic Affairs Unit
Mr. Kobi Michael – Israeli Co-Director, Strategic Affairs Unit
New Person – Strategic Affairs Unit Administrator
Mr. Issa Rabadi – Palestinian (1967) Co-Director, Peace Education Department
Ms. Ghaida Rinawi-Zouabi – Palestinian (1948) Israeli Co-Director, Peace Education Department
Ms. Ayelet Roth – Israeli Co-Director, Peace Education Department
Dr. Sophie Ghanem – Director, Curricula Development and Curricula Review, Peace Education Department
Prof. Salem Aweiss – Team Leader, Palestinian Text Book Review Program
Ms. Cyrien Khano – Administration Coordinator, Peace Education Department
Ms. Amal Duaybis – Coordinator, Ramallah Area, Peace Education Department
Mr. Iyad Bishara – Coordinator, Jenin Area, Peace Education Department
Mr. Ghazi Shaqleh – Coordinator, Jerusalem Area, Peace Education Department
Mr. Eitan Reich – Coordinator, Tel Aviv and Jerusalem Areas, Peace Education Department
Ms. Sophie Shiber– Coordinator, Jerusalem Area, Peace Education Department
New Person – Coordinator, Northern District, Peace Education Department
New Person – Coordinator, Palestinian Israeli Schools, Peace Education Department
Mr. Robin Twite – Director, Water and Environment Department
Ms. Sharon Rosenberg – Assistant to Directors
Ms. Asma Hamand – Assistant to Directors
Ms. Leah Even – Administrator
Ms. Carla Duss – Water and Environment Intern
Ms. Aishe Qunis – Office Cleaning and Cook
Ms. Raneen Nashef – Book keeper
Mr. Mohammad Mansour – Mansour and Kadri, Certified Public Accountants
Board of Directors
Mr. Hanna Siniora – Co-Chairman
Dr. Simcha Bahiri – Co-Chairman
Prof. Ezra Sadan – Board Member
Mr. Ibrahim Kandalaft – Board Member
Mr. Tariq Shaq’a – Board Member
Political Context of IPCRI’s Work - 2004
Political Scenarios and Assumptions
The primary focus of IPCRI’s strategic work is on proposing policy options and alternatives aimed at paving the way for the resumption of the political process. IPCRI is concentrating its efforts on confronting the “here and now” and not on permanent status issues. As such, IPCRI directs its planning and development of policy proposals based on the following political assumptions:
IPCRI’s establishment was founded on supporting the two-state option. Beyond that, IPCRI does not, nor has it ever supported or a developed something that could be called “an IPCRI plan”. Our working philosophy is based on creating policy ideas and proposals, producing policy documents through Israeli-Palestinian consensus building that support a plurality of possibilities and options. We believe that there is always more than one way forward; there are always more options that must be explored and developed. We support a constant and ongoing stream of ideas and proposals aimed at influencing policy and decision makers in Israel, Palestine and in the international community that will lead to the resumption of the official political process between the governments of both parties.
The current political reality
Another possibility is that there will be no Israeli disengagement as a result of political changes in Israel. This possibility requires the developing of contingency planning.
Who are we addressing?
The Context of IPCRI’s Work
What Is Unique in IPCRI’s Work and Approach
IPCRI is often asked to explain what makes IPCRI and IPCRI’s work different from other think-tanks and other similar work being conducted in the region. The answers to these questions are important so that we can avoid duplication of efforts and avoid wasting limited human and financial resources. It is also important to demonstrate that there is cooperation, coordination and sharing of information between various like-minded institutions in the area.
First and foremost, IPCRI stands out from all other similar think-tank efforts in the fact that it is a joint Israeli-Palestinian partnership. Israeli-Palestinian cooperation in IPCRI is part of the very nature and fabric that makes IPCRI what it is. This cooperation and partnership is a critical element in demonstrating the real possibilities for Israeli-Palestinian cooperation and partnerships in the world outside of IPCRI’s doors. In this way, IPCRI is a model for all Israelis and Palestinians.
Secondly, most of the similar think-tank policy work being carried out today by others in the area remain focused on permanent status issues. This is true regarding the associations formed to support the Geneva Accords; the Nusseibeh-Ayalon agreement; the work being carried out in cooperation between the ECF and the Palestinian Peace Center on border regimes; the new association called Re’ut focusing mainly on issues concerning Israeli society and politics but also engaging in joint policy work with Palestinians; the work of the Jerusalem Institute and the International Peace and Cooperation Center; and the Peres Center for Peace with its various Palestinian partners. While it is completely true that there is significant overlap in the names of the various working groups that IPCRI has established with those of other institutions, there is almost no content overlap as IPCRI’s focus is on the current deadlock and impasse – on the “here and now” and not on final or permanent status issues. For more information on this, see the section on the “Terms of Reference” of the various working groups.
Work Plan for IPCRI’s Strategic Affairs Department 2004
Over the past years IPCRI has been convening a number of joint Israeli-Palestinian policy forums. These have included joint working groups on: Jerusalem, the Road Map, Verification, Monitoring and Compliance Enhancement, Water, Agriculture, and Economics. Each group has been convened independently of the others. Most of the groups were composed of between 20-30 members and were convened on the average every two months for a long weekend meeting abroad (Thursday-Sunday, usually in Turkey). These working groups had been quite effective and efficient in their work. Most of the work of these groups produced clear and coherent policy recommendations that have been subsequently offered to Israeli, Palestinian and International policy makers affecting the Israeli-Palestinian relationship.
Several challenges and lessons learned from our work in conducting these programs are:
As a result of the lessons learned we have decided to redesign IPCRI’s Strategic Affairs Unit in the following way:
IPCRI’s Strategic Affairs Department has organized its work in 2004 within the framework of joint Israeli-Palestinian teams that will work throughout the year. This is an adaptation on the current scheme of convening periodic meetings of the various IPCRI Working Groups. The aim of the change is to be more responsive and pro-active to ongoing political developments and to increase the output of IPCRI’s work.
The Department is managed by a joint team who are experienced in managing complex political joint endeavors. The directors of the Unit are people with experience in directing the work of a large number of people and have policy analysis background and experience. The Palestinian Co-Director of the SAU is Mr. Khaled Duzdar who has had experience working in various Palestinian NGO’s and in several joint projects with Israelis. The Israeli Co-Director is Mr. Kobi Michael, a retired Lt. Colonel in the IDF where he commanded the District Coordination Offices in the Gaza Strip and later in the West Bank being in charge of the joint Israeli-Palestinian patrols. Today Kobi is completing his Ph.D. in conflict resolution at the Hebrew University and he is also a research fellow at the Jerusalem Institute. The Co-Directors of IPCRI together with the Strategic Unit Co-Directors form the managing and directorate Quintet for the Unit – setting policy, deciding on team members, responding to political developments and needs. The Strategic Unit Quintet also serves in an advocacy and follow-up function ensuring that policy recommendations are brought forward to the decision makers in Israel, Palestine and in the International Community.
The work is being organized into between 10-15 professional joint teams with at least eight people on each team. Each team is led by two team leaders who are being paid for the products that they produce. The other members of the team and not paid for their participation with the exception of travel expenses. The team leaders are responsible for the writing of the team’s papers in the name of the whole team.
Each working group is concentrating on specific and well defined aspects of the subject matter concerned by their team based on specific Terms of Reference prepared by the SAU Management Quintet.
The outputs of the teams will be delivered in the following ways:
1. Periodic papers distributed to policy makers and/or to the publics concerned.
2. Public open conferences periodically held to report and discuss findings and assessments.
3. Public closed conferences, hearings, and policy forum discussions for invited participants only.
4. A large annual Israeli-Palestinian conference modeled on the Herzliyeh conference for Israelis, Palestinians and international personalities (The Notre Dame Conference).
In addition, all papers that will be determined available for the public will be made available on a web site. All public papers will also be translated to Hebrew and Arabic and will be distributed to the media.
Strategic Unit Structure
I. IPCRI – Co-Directors – Gershon Baskin and Zakaria al Qaq
II. Unit Co-Directors - Khaled Duzdar, Daniel Mokady, Kobi Michael
III. Team Leaders – one Israeli, one Palestinian in each team
IV. Team Members – at least four additional people on each team (two Israelis, two Palestinians)
The Notre Dame Conference
Breaking the Impasse:
Creating Stability, Security, Peace and Prosperity
Israeli Palestinian and International Conference
Jerusalem, Ramallah and Gaza
During 22-23 November 2004 IPCRI will convene a major Israeli-Palestinian-International Conference in Jerusalem aimed at contributing to enhancing Israel’s and Palestine’s national policy agenda setting and to the upgrading of their strategic decision-making through rigorous policy-driven research and by engaging policy analysts in direct discussion with policy-makers.
The IPCRI Conference will be a "summit" of some of the most influential Israeli, Palestinian and international leaders that will meet to consider issues crucial to current and future prospects for peace. IPCRI decided to establish this conference to fill an acutely felt need for a high-level forum, in which senior leaders from Israel, Palestine and the International Community, of diverse yet relevant backgrounds could convene to consider issues crucial to the current and future relations between the parties.
The Conference will bring together in a nonpartisan, informal atmosphere, far removed from the distractions of day to day business, a group of several hundred leaders - Israelis, Palestinians and internationals, from pertinent fields - government, the private and corporate world, the defense and intelligence communities, political circles, the media and academia. For two intensive days, these leaders will address, discuss, and debate the most pressing issues on the national agendas.
The Conference will be held in three locations simultaneously linked by video conferencing in order to ensure wide Palestinian participation. The main hall will be in the Notre Dame Conference Center in Jerusalem. The conference will also be convening in the Grand Park Hotel in Ramallah and in the Rashad a-Shawwa Center in Gaza. Speakers will be addressing the audience from all three locations.
The Conference will also benefit from the policy work conducted by some 15 joint teams of Israelis and Palestinians working throughout the year on the development of policy papers on a broad range of subjects.
IPCRI Policy on Developing Public Policy Analysis and Recommendations
The primary focus of all IPCRI policy recommendations and analysis is advancing the resumption of the official political process between the two parties. This must mean that we evaluate, assess and make recommendations not on the basis of narrow and particular interests of each side separately, but as how policies would enhance the chances of resuming the political process between the side parties.
The Process of Developing IPCRI Public Policy Recommendations and Analyses
SAU Working Groups and Terms of Reference
Group 1: Seeking New Political Understandings – Breaking the Impasse
Team Leaders: Dr. Riad Malki and Mr. Reuvan Merhav
The group is composed of politicians and political analysts, with security and political backgrounds, people with past experience in negotiations and previous Israeli-Palestinian dialogues is preferable. The work of this group is to search for ways of breaking the impasse while avoiding the possibility of falling into the trap of mutual blaming and accusations.
Questions to be answered:
Is this possible? What other possibilities can be developed to change the status quo?
Group 2: Border Regime
Team Leaders: Prof. David Newman and Mr. Charles Shamas
The group will be composed of prominent professionals with political, security, economic, planning or geographical experience. The main challenge for the group is developing a civilian concept regarding the border regime (without putting emphasis on security issues.)
The group will examine the implications of:
Group 3: Hamas-Israel (not yet formed)
The group is composed of political analysts, academics, orientalists and political figures. On the Palestinian side, Hamas affiliated and religious figures are preferable.
Soliciting discussions and working papers from academics and political figures, to research and assess the possibility of establishing a future dialogue between Israel and Hamas.
Group 4: Economics and Security
Team Leaders: Mr. Mahmoud (Abu Nabil) Faraj and Mr. Adi Ashkenazi
The group is composed of economists and economic analysts with security background. Past experience in negotiations and previous Israeli-Palestinian dialogues is preferable.
Members of the team will be invited to present concrete cases where security measures interfere with commercial and economic matters. The task of the team will be to propose means for mitigating the impact of necessary security measures on economic development and commerce.
Looking at how to jointly serve the Palestinian economic interests, together with Israeli security needs.
Questions to be answered:
§ Should the entry of Palestinian labor to Israel be reconsidered?
§ How can the movement of people and goods be improved, with minimal friction, through better technological means?
§ How many gates should be between the West Bank and Israel? For people, for merchandise? How should the gates work? Who should operate them?
§ Should there be special arrangements for “special” people, tourists, certified businessmen, politicians, diplomats, clergy, and International bodies?
§ In which cases do the security measures interfere with economic and commercial matters? And what should be done about it?
§ What kind of security cooperation on these issues be possible, if at all?
§ Could third parties or non PA Palestinian parties be engaged to play a positive role?
Group 5: Economic cooperation and development
Team Leaders: Mr. Saeb Bamya and Mr. Rafi Benvenisti
The group will be composed of economists and economic analysts. Past experience in negotiations and previous Israeli-Palestinian dialogue is preferable.
This group will work on developing concrete proposals for re-instating Israeli-Palestinian economic cooperation. This team will be facing the new realities in which the tendency is to bring about complete economic separation. IPCRI’s point of view clearly differs and supports continued economic cooperation and coordination.
The team work frame should concentrate on the following:
Questions to be answered:
Group 6: Creating and Institutionalizing a Culture for Peace and Education for Peace
Team Leaders: Prof. Ghassan F. Abdullah, Prof. Dan Bar-On, and Dr. Hawla Abu Bakr
The group is composed of education experts, psychologists and sociologists, human rights experts and academics. Past experience in negotiations and previous Israeli-Palestinian dialogues is preferable.
Questions to be answered:
Group 7: The Media – a Key Tool for Advancing Peace and Conflict
Team Leaders: ____________________ and Prof. Gadi Wolfsfeld
This team will be composed of media experts from academia and from the field of media who have demonstrated a critical analysis capability of their own field. The team will investigate make kinds of contributions the media can make towards advancing peace. The challenges of this group include:
Group 8: Environment and Natural Resources
Team Leaders: Dr. Mohammad Said Hmaidi and Dr. Shmuel Brenner
The group is comprised of environmental professionals and experts from both parties.
The main task will be to determine and process for bringing about the implementation of recommendations of the UNEP Desk Study on the environment. Priority should be given to advancing environment cooperation, focusing on key and implementable environmental programs and projects including cross-boundary infrastructure projects.
Issues to be discussed:
Group 9: Jerusalem
Team Leaders: Mr. Hanna Siniora and Prof. Shlomo Hasson
Terms of Reference for Working on Jerusalem
1. The Jerusalem Envelope Security Barrier
Like in all of Israel and Palestine there is a process of rapid and continued polarization between Jews and Palestinians in Jerusalem. The City of Jerusalem is undergoing significant and dramatic developments as a result of the completion of the Jerusalem envelope so-called security barrier. Palestinian Jerusalemites who lived in the periphery of East Jerusalem have moved back into East Jerusalem resulting in a rapid movement of other Palestinians into the high quality low priced housing left by those who moved to the Israeli side of the security barrier. It is estimated that more than 250,000 Palestinians will reside of the Israeli side of the barrier. The municipality of Jerusalem and the Government of Israel have not been able or willing to provide necessary services to the Palestinians of East Jerusalem prior to the recent population movements. Prior to the construction of the barrier there already was a shortage of classrooms for more than 6,000 Palestinian students in East Jerusalem. Current developments will increase the shortages of these vital services. The implications of the security barrier on Jerusalem will be far more significant than any of the Israeli policy planners involved in the construction of the barrier could even imagine. Several studies of the implications have been conducted. A new study by the Jerusalem Institute is about to be published. That study will include policy recommendations. All of the studies already conducted have been either Palestinian, Israeli or by international bodies. No joint Israeli-Palestinian policy work on this issue has yet been conducted (other than the preliminary work done by IPCRI e.g. our map).
2. Developing Possibilities for Palestinian Municipal Leadership in Jerusalem
When and if the peace process advances, Israel and Palestine will need to address how the City of Jerusalem will become a shared or divided capital city for the two states. Other than the difficult logistical problems they will encounter they will find that the Palestinian side of city is almost devoid of local municipal leadership or bodies concerned with municipal issues of governance. Over the years, the Government of Israel has acted systematically to prevent the development of Palestinian leadership in Jerusalem or the development of Palestinian institutions that could have leadership of governance roles in the future of the city. In Phase I of the Road Map the Government of Israel is supposed to allow for the re-opening of Palestinian institutions that were closed after September 28, 2000. It is important to list those institutions closed and to analyze in what way those re-opened institutions could play leadership roles in Jerusalem. In addition, it is important to analyze what kind of local institutional organization Palestinians could undertake that would not be jeopardized by acting against Israeli law. Other organization can also be undertaken, but first it is necessary to determine what could and what could not be allowed under Israeli jurisprudence.
3. Planning and building in Jerusalem
In continuation to the work begun in IPCRI of analyzing the Jerusalem Master Plan and its implications for the future of Israeli-Palestinian coexistence in Jerusalem, this work should be continued. Additionally, IPCRI should undertake a systematic engagement of knowing the agenda of the district and local planning commissions in order to have a growing knowledge base of zoning and development plans that impact upon Israeli-Palestinian relations in Jerusalem. This work must be undertaken with the goal of being able to submit objections to plans that will be detrimental to Israeli-Palestinian relations in Jerusalem.
Four additional groups are in the process of being established:
Group 10: Water
Team Leaders: Mr. Ihab Barghouthi and Prof. Avner Adin
Terms of Reference
Since the outbreak of the second intifada all of the joint Israeli-Palestinian cooperative bodies established by the Oslo agreements disbanded, with the exception of the joint water committee. This one committee was taken over by the US Government (through USAID) which continued to convene joint working meetings throughout the past 3 ½ years. The Tri-lateral water committee even managed to product two “political” statements signed by the two sides stating their intention to keep water outside of the realm of violence. The trilateral water committee has made some progress over the years, yet there is a wide gap between what has been accomplished and what is needed in the field of water cooperation.
The main tasks of this group will include the following challenges:
Group 11: Agriculture
Team Leaders: Mr. Mohammad Hamalawleh and Mr. Hillel Adiri
The main aim of this working group will be to devise a proposed plan and recommendations for the re-instatement of Israeli-Palestinian agriculture cooperation focusing on the fields of:
1. Plant protection – phyto-sanitary controls
2. Veterinary services
3. Marketing, forwarding and exporting
4. Agricultural trade
The team will also examine specific problems concerning the needs of the farmers and the various growers associations and to determine what kind of cooperation is possible in the private sector. The team will investigate these needs and possibilities with representatives of the private agricultural sector.
Group 12: Security Coordination
Brig. General Fathi Arafat and Lt. Col. (ret.) Kobi Michael
The last two assumptions stress the duality and the contrasting tension which are present in the reality of a unilateral disengagement that isn't coordinated with the Palestinians, but it seems as that in the current political situation there few other option.
Specific Challenges and Questions for the Group:
Group 13: Human Rights
Team Leaders: Mr. Bassem Eid (Palestinian Side) Mr. Elias Khoury (Israeli Palestinians), Israeli (not confirmed yet)
The groups will be composed of human rights experts and academics. Past experience in negotiations and previous Israeli-Palestinian dialogues is preferable.
This team will be composed of human rights experts and specialists and from human rights organizations who have demonstrated a critical analysis capability of their own field.
The challenges of this group include:
Additional Issues that may be dealt with:
The IPCRI Water and Environment Department
The IPCRI Environment Program has been in existence eight years. Throughout this time IPCRI has been engaged in addressing environment, development and public health issues shared by Israelis and Palestinians. During its existence, the Environment Program has worked to promote effective cooperation between Israelis and Palestinians in the field of environment. It has successfully secured cooperation from the Israeli and Palestinian Environment and Health Ministries, local authorities, NGO’s and a wide variety of academic institutions. Many of the projects which it has carried out have been highly innovative.
1. SECOND ISRAEL-PALESTINIAN-INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON “WATER FOR LIFE IN THE MIDDLE EAST”
October 10 to October 13th, 2004
Antalya, Turkey or Rome, Italy (to be decided)
SPONSORED BY IPCRI Together with THE INTERNATIONAL WATER RESOURCES ASSOCIATION–IWRA, Co-sponsored by UNITED STATES AGENCY FOR INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT- USAID, THE MAYOR OF ROME - The Office for Peace in Jerusalem of the Municipality of Rom and UNESCO
1. To provide a forum for fruitful dialogue, development of mutual understanding and mutual respect between Israeli, Palestinian and other Middle Eastern and international water specialists. The conference aims to present subjects of interest for water scientists, engineers, economists, lawyers, administrators, managers and policy makers. The goal is to provide a basis for improved cooperation between the peoples of the region and the international community in developing, managing and protecting their scarce shared water resources and for the promotion of “Water for Life” for the benefit of all the nations of the region.
2. To provide a follow-up some twelve years after the First Israeli-Palestinian International Academic Conference on Water held in Zurich, Switzerland December 10-13, 1992 for the purposes of evaluating developments relating to water resources in the Middle East since that historic conference.
3. To hear up-to-date scientific and technical papers and reports on recent developments related to the water resources technology and management with particular reference to the Middle East with specific emphasis on Israeli and Palestinian issues.
4. To hold discussions, dialogs and workshops with the participation of both academic water specialists and representatives of the water authorities of the countries of the region and international community on specific issues dealing with improving cooperation on water resources development and of meeting the needs of the peoples of the region.
We plan that this conference, to be held in an era when there are renewed hopes for progress in the peace process, to be even more significant than the first conference held in Switzerland some 12 years ago. For this purpose, special attention will be given to the inclusion of authoritative speakers dealing with the scientific, technical, economic, legal and policy aspect of promoting “Water for Life” among the partners of the shared water resources on the region. The program will host distinguished guests from around the world whose expertise is particularly relevant to the provision of “Water for Life” in the region.
The main conference topics will include:
A- Geopolitical, Legal and Cultural issues relating to the Water Resources of the Region:
B- Management and Development of Water Resources
C- Water Science, Technology and Quality Assurance appropriate for the Middle East
2. Methyl Bromide Replacement Program
Methyl Bromide (MBr) is one of the most potent ozone-depleting chemicals known to humanity. Having signed and ratified the Montreal Protocol on substances that deplete the ozone layer, the London Amendment, and the Copenhagen Amendment, Israel is obliged to phase out its use of MBr by the year 2005. Israeli professionals have conducted research on this matter and have found a number of possible replacements for Israeli agriculture, and the limit of 2005 may very well be met. However, the Palestinian Authority is having great difficulty meeting this deadline and Israel's compliance with the Montreal Protocol applies to the PA as well. It has only until 2005 to eliminate its presently high level of MBr usage.
With this problem in mind IPCRI decided to cooperate with the Palestinian Ministry of Agriculture and the Farmers' Associations in Gaza and the West Bank in order to share information and know-how about possible MBr substitutes. The first step was to conduct a professional workshop in order to provide the right tools to deal with the problem.
Reuben Ausher, until recently head of the Pesticides Division at the Israeli Ministry of Agriculture, was chosen as the professional advisor to the course and Hillel Adiri, formerly the Israeli Liaison of the Ministry of Agriculture to the Palestinian Ministry of Agriculture in Gaza, served as the course director. The residential course was held at the Faculty of Agriculture of the Hebrew University, Rehovot, from December 28 to December 31, 2003. The teaching staff included senior academics from the Faculty of Agriculture, officials from the Ministry of Agriculture in Israel and other professionals. IPCRI will be continuing this work in 2004 with additional courses, the establishment of a demonstration field in Gaza with the assistance of the German Scientific Research Foundation and through the extension services of the Palestinian and Israeli Ministries of Agriculture.
3. Project: Farmer’s Training Project – meeting the requirements of “Eurep-gap” – Euro-Retailer Produce Working Group for Good Agricultural Practices
IPCRI has been actively promoting Israeli/Palestinian agricultural cooperation over the past six years. It has sponsored a series of workshops and seminars on various aspects of agricultural cooperation including how best to promote agricultural exports from Israel and the Palestinian Authority areas to Europe, the value of integrated pest management, and aspects of the use of water in agriculture. Currently IPCRI has launched an initiative designed to help Palestinian farmers deal effectively with the problem posed by the phasing out of Methyl Bromide).
The IPCRI “Agricultural Working Group” which advises on the program includes Israel and Palestinian officials (taking part in their personal capacities), representatives of the agricultural sector (including staff of cooperatives and of Agrexco), private farmers and representatives of NGOs.
The participants in the program include leading Israeli experts on the Eurep-Gap program, Palestinian farmers from grower's organizations, including staff responsible for the organization of packing houses and transport of products, and agronomists.
Content of the Program
The program is designed to help Palestinian farmers meet the standards for their produce required by EUREPGAP, a list of conditions which farmers must meet if they mean to export to Europe which is laid down by the relevant directorates of the European Union in cooperation with Israeli growers and exporters. It is essential that farmers should meet these standards if they mean to continue to export to Europe. Failure to meet them will mean that farmers are unable to sell their produce in their major international market.
The content of with program will include:
The guide will be intended to offer practical instructions to farmers. A draft will be prepared and discussed at a meeting of the senior participants (see below). It will have two parts – the first a general introduction to the subject, a description of EUREP-GAP, and of the standards which farmers will be expected to meet. The second part will be prepared in relation to the various protocols available for the cultivation of individual crops. This there will be separate texts for those growing strawberries and individual vegetable crops. All these crop specific texts will be detailed, giving instruction of all stages of the growth of the crop – choosing suitable land, what variety to plant, fertilizing, irrigation, the use of appropriate sprays, harvesting, storage and transport.
The Guide will include the following modules:
1. Introduction to EUREP-Gap
2. Record Keeping
3. Varieties and Rootstocks
4. Site History and site Management
5. Soil and Substrate Management
6. Fertilizer Use
8. Crop Protection
10. Post Harvesting Treatments
11. Waste and Pollution management, recycling and refuse
12. Worker health Safety and Welfare
13. Environmental Issues
14. Complaint Forms
15. Internal Audits
List of Contacts
This course, which will be limited to twenty Palestinian participants, together with staff from Israel, about 25 altogether, will review the draft guide. It will also go into more detail about the topics covered in the guide. Together with EUREP-GAP there will be study of ISO 9001 – edition 2000 and of the relevant protocol for packing house management – B.R.C. (England)
Topics to be covered include:
· Instruction in the nature of EUREP-GAP, its organization and the list of requirements it stipulates together with training in the completion of related forms and other documentation
· Explanation of the various protocols governing the cultivation of specific crops
being dealt with including strawberries, cherry tomatoes and specific varieties of flowers(copies of the protocols in Arabic and Hebrew will be available to participants).
· Selection of plots for specific crops
· Choice of varieties
· Preparation of plots for planting
· Irrigation and maintenance of the water system
· Use of fertilizer
· Hygiene and workers safety
· Meeting the requirements of ISO 9001 including the management of the farm, data needed for correct management, and provision for appropriate staff training and provision of necessary data.
· Storage and packing – including inspection and transport from the farm to the packing house. This aspect of the content of the course will include reference to B.R.C., an English standard for the management of packing houses which has been adapted for international use. It includes all aspect of managing packing houses, instruction for employees, hygiene and safety considerations and use of appropriate materials. Reference will also be made to the specific problems faced in relation to moving products from the Palestinian Authority Areas into Israel.
· Dealing with toxic substances
· Meeting the requirements of ISO 9001 including management of the farm, data needed for correct management and provision of the necessary data.
The Peace Education Department
Those who live under conditions of an ongoing violent conflict may find themselves accustomed to attitudes and behaviors which derive from such a situation of violence and distrust. This context refuels attitudes and behaviors such as supporting violence and feelings of hopelessness that construct and reinforce it, and so we find ourselves imprisoned in a vicious cycle of violence. Our goal is to bring about change, social change, a change in awareness and patterns of thought which will bring forth a change in the behavior patterns of all those who are involved in the educational process (students, teachers, school principals, the program’s staff etc.); a structural change in which the vision of an equal, just society, that contains and accepts the other within will be actualized; a society that regards just peace as a state of mind, a chosen value and a way of life. Education for peace is an ongoing and continuous process, which first and foremost transfers the way of coping with a conflict from a violent to a non-violent track.
The success of peace education is to be evaluated, therefore, by the degree of direct action taken by the participants in order to change their environment and the context of their life; to change their attitudes and behaviors which are related to and derive from the conflict, on the basis of a deeper and better understanding of its causes, dynamic development, and the parties involved.
The departments’ programs are implemented in the Israeli and Palestinian formal education systems, among the three communities: the Jewish and Palestinian communities in Israel, and the Palestinian in the Palestine. Teachers, perceived by us as agents of change, are our major target population. In the school year of 2003-2004, 32 schools in Israel -12 Palestinian and 20 Jewish - and 27 schools in Palestine are participating in our programs.
The project was originally initiated to penetrate the school systems of the two societies directly implicated in the Israeli-Arab conflict (Israeli and Palestinian), and to turn the classroom into a vehicle for rapprochement. It is an innovative and unprecedented endeavor in which peace education curricula were designed, while at the same time training and developing a cadre of agents of change, namely the professionals involved in the project - principals, teachers, curricula developers, facilitators and representatives from the Ministries of Education. The direct encounters between the participants enhanced the people-to-people aspect of the project.
The project's fundamental idea was based on the decision that Israelis and Palestinians together develop model lessons for 10th grade students (15-16 year olds). The tenth grade was selected because of the belief that these students have the cognitive abilities to confront the subject materials and are not yet under the pressure of matriculation exams. The curricula, designed by professionals from the communities involved, was first tested on a small sample of classes (the "ambassadors"), and after a process of trial and correction, implemented for the first time during the 1997/8 academic year. One of the long term goals of the project is to create an educational package made of the curricula, teacher training and encounters both at the level of teachers and students that will be adopted and widely used by the Ministries of Education of the two nations, implemented through trained agents of change. Curricula teams agreed on value statements based on the recognition and acceptance of the other, universal values, and critical thinking.
The uniqueness of Peace Education curricula is that it is based on existing subjects taught in the classes. The curricula teams took the materials in sociology/social sciences, literature, history and English and infused this material with new concepts and activities and added a new text. This text, while expanding knowledge of the subject, is particularly valuable in highlighting concepts of peace education. Teachers use this text in conjunction with their traditional subjects to discuss peace education daily. Following the tremendous success of the pilot stage of the project and many requests from the schools participating in it, as well as from schools that have heard about the project, IPCRI's staff is convinced of the necessity to continue its work with the schools currently participating in the project. Furthermore, we believe that in order for the Peace Education package to be accepted and adopted by the Ministries of Education, we must reach a critical number of participating schools in each country, so that the demand for the program will come from the ground up to the Ministries themselves.
General and specific objectives
The objectives of peace education are the imparting of values of tolerance and acceptance of the other, mutual respect of rights, equality and social justice. This is a critical process, in which all who are involved in the education process are asked to examine themselves, their truths, and their relation and patterns of behavior towards their close environment, and only later towards the remote environment and their enemies.
According to our view, in order to enable change three areas need to be focused upon:
In order to make decisions, we need to be exposed to relevant knowledge and to understand the system, its power relations and control mechanisms. After we have chosen a way, learned and understood the facts, we need to acquire skills and tools for coping with the reality in peaceful ways.
The educational process is facilitated in workshops, in a holistic approach, with small groups, finding expression for both the emotional and analytical sides of each participant.
Based on the above principles we develop, collect and process tools and frameworks for clarifying and studying contents of peace education, for developing commitment to peace, and on the practical level – for imparting skills. This is done within each community (uni-nationally\in single identity groups) and in encounters between the different communities.
We hold principals’, educators’ and students’ encounters, and organize professional trainings in the field of peace education, regarding values, knowledge and skills required in the field.
The staff of the department guides, trains and crystallizes the partnership with and between all who participate in the educational process, so that this partnership will be a firm basis which will enable growth and the advancement of change.
Our goal is To bring about change, social change; a change in awareness and patterns of thought which will bring forth a change in the behavior patterns of all those who are involved in the educational process (students, teachers, school principals, programs' staff etc.); a structural change in which the vision of an equal, just society, that contains and accepts the other within, will be actualized; a society that regards peace as a state of mind, chosen value and a way of life.
Our objectives are: To impart values of tolerance and acceptance of the other, recognition of the equal right to liberty, and social justice; development of awareness and critical perception; acquisition of non-violent communications and conflict resolution skills; and an encounter between Palestinians and Jews (since the beginning of the Intifada student encounters between Jewish students and Palestinian students from the West Bank did not take place, yet we try to hold a limited number of Jewish-Arab encounters).
Target population: Educators – school principals, teachers and school advisors and students of the 10th and 11th grades.
New teachers’ and principals’ encounter – 5 days.
2. Teacher training in the “Pathways into Reconciliation”/ "Education for Peace" curricula – 5 days.
3. Teacher facilitation of the curriculum in class – about 16 meetings of 2 teaching hours of “Pathways into Reconciliation”/"Education for Peace", for a group of 20 students.
4. Guidance and facilitation of the teachers throughout their work with the students (a guidance meeting once every two weeks, or, according to the needs which arise).
5. Students’ encounter (2 days – if possible!!).
6. The continuation programs alter. Most of them consist of a joint Israeli – Palestinian training of at least 5 days (usually abroad, in a neutral place).
7. Facilitation of CBI – Workable Peace – Inter group negotiation skills, by the teachers, about 22 hours. 8. Guidance and facilitation meetings with the departments’ staff, for WP implementation.
The Peace Education Curricula
Curricula which are implemented in 2003-2004 in the 10th and 11th grades are:
The curriculum comprises 3 units, which can be implemented in Israel through literature, social science and history studies and through Arabic lessons, English and Social Studies in the Palestinian schools and requires at least 16 meetings of 1 ½ hours , for a group of up to 20 participants.
There are different programs in different stages of development by the departments’ staff, with the cooperation of educators and organizations in the area and abroad. Furthermore, staff members attempt to answer the special needs that arise in the field, helping with processing, developing and tailoring special programs in the peace education field.