The Hollings Center’s Next-Generation Dialogue series connects a rising generation of experts and professionals across Muslim-majority countries with their American counterparts. The goal is to cultivate cooperative, innovative thinking on crucial issues. The Hollings Center has organized Next-Generation dialogues on Turkey, Egypt, and Afghanistan that bring together academics, journalists, civil society leaders, businesspeople, and government officials.
Hollings Center Regional Policy Dialogues cover consequential and challenging topics that link Muslim-majority nations and the United States. Dialogues center on subjects that are critically relevant yet under-discussed in the public sphere. Participants have included a broad spectrum of government officials, experts on domestic and foreign policy, academics, economists, civil society leaders and practitioners. Regional dialogues have addressed topics relating to Iran, Iraq, the Caspian Sea and Middle East television media. Most notably, the Hollings Center has organized four Regional Policy Dialogues on Afghanistan with the assistance of the American Institute of Afghanistan Studies (AIAS).
The Hollings Center’s Higher Education Dialogue series fosters cooperation between universities and other institutions of learning through the exchange of ideas, expertise and best practices. Dialogues focus on issues of significant importance to higher education communities in the United States and the Middle East, North Africa, South Asia, Europe and Eurasia. Participants include distinguished university presidents, administrators, senior officials and educators from over a dozen countries. Dialogue conferences have explored topics that include independent universities in the Muslim world, study abroad programs and quality assurance in higher education.
The Speaker Series include private and public roundtables, panel discussions, workshops and other seminars. Events take place in Istanbul and Washington, D.C. and are often held in coordination with partner organizations. These events expand upon dialogue topics, reinforce and expand networks, and promote conference outcomes to a broader audience of researches, professionals and journalists. Examples of recent events include an event with Egyptian academics on the summer 2013 events in Egypt that led to the ouster of the Muslim Brotherhood and an event on the Iranian presidential election in June 2013.
The Small Grants Program enables select participants to pursue collaborative projects that build on critical issues raised at the dialogue events. The Center provides grants to selected participants to support follow-on initiatives such as international visits, pilot studies, professional development opportunities, workshops and research-driven written or video projects. The small grants program promotes cross-cultural collaboration that amplifies conference outcomes and deepens participant networks. Examples of ongoing small grants include an effort to synthesize policy recommendations for Western officials towards Central Asia and expanding networks of female business leaders in the Ferghana valley.