School of Law and Political Sciences

ERASMUS+ PROJECT – JEAN MONNET MODULE / USEK

The Jean Monnet projects are designed to promote excellence in teaching and research, and to foster innovation, mutual enrichment and the dissemination of European Union-related content. In 2017, the Holy Spirit University of Kaslik (USEK) was awarded a Jean Monnet grant as part of the Erasmus+ 2017 call for proposals in order to support the development of a teaching module on “Europe and the MENA region: Issues and Challenges in Trans-Mediterranean Relations”.

This project is the first Jean Monnet Project to be selected in Lebanon in 10 years and is coordinated by H.E. Ambassador Nassif Hitti, Director of USEK’s Higher Institute of Political and Administrative Sciences with the support of the International Affairs Office.

The first part of the teaching module resulted in the creation of two Master courses: “MES605 - The Middle East and Europe: Issues and Challenges in Trans-Mediterranean Relations” and “MES600 - Regional Dynamics and Current Issues in the Middle East”. Simultaneously, several activities were also organized.

Seminar: Middle East: Order and Dis-order in the Middle East Regional System, Rome, January 25-26, 2019
This seminar, organized by the Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI), aimed at exploring the ongoing and future developments in the Middle East and the growing destruction of the old regional order. Particular attention was devoted to the case of Syria and the ramifications of the conflict there, by analyzing the stances and interests of several regional and international players. Another highlighted point was the nature and sustainability of the alliances in and on the region as a key aspect to assess the future regional order. Dr. Nassif was invited to participate in this seminar as part of the Jean Monnet Project, enhancing therefore the cooperation plan with the IAI, especially in terms of research.
Union for the Mediterranean, Barcelona, December 8, 2018
Dr. Nassif Hitti was invited by the former secretary Fethallah Sijilmassi for a brainstorming session within a very small group of practitioners and officials from EU and the MENA region to discuss the challenges faced in the region. This was part of the Research activities of the Jean Monnet project.
Roundtable: Les relations transméditerranéennes, November 7, 2018
A roundtable with Mathieu Rey, Nassif Hitti and Jana Jabbour was organized by the Cultural French Institute as part of the Salon du livre francophone de Beyrouth. USEK and the French Institute met during the month of April 2018 to prepare for this event aiming to promote the Jean Monnet Module during the book fair, a major event in Lebanon hosting more than 80,000 visitors every year and featuring many cultural events, debates, and conferences. USEK’s participation and engagement in this fair enabled it to reach a wider audience, as the audience was not limited to students enrolled in the module only, but also other students majoring in Political Sciences. A rich debate with the audience took place at the end of the roundtable.
Debate with Gilles Kepel, Salon du livre francophone de Beyrouth organized by the Cultural French Institute, November 3, 2018
This debate aimed to discuss the last book of Gilles Kepel “Sortir du Chaos”, which is directly related to the relations between Europe and the MENA.
Conference at the Mediterranean Academy of Diplomatic Studies (MEDAC), Malta, November 2018
This conference aimed to identify potential solutions to address new challenges, like migrations, terrorism, etc. Dr. Nassif Hitti also underlined the new security issues in the region.
Conference: Challenges over Power and Regional Stability in the Mediterranean, October 3, 2018
Moderated by Dr. Nassif Hitti, this conference was given by Prof. Jean-Paul Chagnollaud and Ms. Agnès Levallois who delivered specialized lectures to the USEK students as part of the Jean Monet Module. Very active discussions were conducted with both students and academics. The Erasmus+ National Office Coordinator was also invited and participated in this activity.
Mediterranean Academy of Diplomatic Studies (MEDAC), March 8-9, 2018
During this conference, Dr. Nassif Hitti, project coordinator, addressed the trans-Mediterranean relations to diplomats of the Mediterranean region. The conference at the Ministry discussed the same topic.
The Regional 'Cold War' in the Middle East. Conversation with Dr. Nassif Hitti”, Rome, Italy, January 25, 2018
This conference was organized as part of the cooperation with the Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI) in Italy, developed through the Jean Monnet project. Many other activities are now underway, particularly the organization of joint lectures and conferences. This collaboration between a key stakeholder in Europe (IAI) and USEK is crucial to initiate research projects and ensure the sustainability of the Jean Monnet project.
Brainstorming Session, Barcelona, Spain, January 1, 2018
Dr. Nassif Hitti was invited by Fethallah Sijilmassi, former Secretary General of the Union for the Mediterranean (UfM), for a brainstorming session within a very small group of practitioners and officials from the EU and the MENA region to discuss the challenges faced in the region. This was part of the research activities of the Jean Monnet project.
Conference at the Cercle National des Armées, Paris, France, December 12, 2017
During this conference organized by Les Écoles de Saint-Cyr, Dr. Nassif Hitti shed the light on the challenges facing the trans-Mediterranean relations and how a common agenda can be developed to address these challenges. He also highlighted the Jean Monnet project and the importance of developing an academic cooperation on trans-Mediterranean relations.
Conference: The EU’s New Resilience Agenda in the MENA Region, November 3, 2017
This conference was organized in collaboration with the Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI) and the Foundation for European Progressive Studies, with the support of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. Representatives from the European Delegation in Beirut and the Erasmus+ National Office in Beirut attended this event.
Erasmus+ Information Day, Beirut, Lebanon, October 5, 2017
On the occasion of the Erasmus+ Information Day, organized at the Ministry of Education and Higher Education on October 5, 2017, H.E. Dr. Nassif Hitti, Director of the USEK Higher Institute of Political and Administrative Sciences and coordinator of the project, presented the EU-funded Jean Monnet Module “Europe and the MENA Region: Issues and Challenges in the Trans-Mediterranean Relations”.
Holy Spirit University of Kaslik
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