Das Lichtenberg-Kolleg lädt in Zusammenarbeit mit dem Seminar für Arabistik/Islamwissenschaf, dem Centrum Orbis Orientalis und dem Courant Forschungszentrum "Bildung und Religion" zu folgendem Vortrag ein:
Rediscovering a Precious Resource:Knowledge and Higher Education in Saudi Arabia
Prof. Dr. Fahad I. Alhabeeb (Saudi Arabien)
(Kulturattaché der Botschaft Saudi Arabiens in Deutschland)
Prof. Dr. Katja Niethammer
Asien-Afrika-Institut (Universität Hamburg)
Saudi Arabia might be an ancient culture deeply rooted in its traditions. But it is also a comparatively young country, changing rapidly. Nowhere is this more obvious than in its institutions of higher learning. Anyone who would read a five year old report about Saudi Arabia's university system would get hopelessly outdated information. The speed at which the country extends its education system and opens new universities is almost breathtaking.In the last seven years alone it could celebrate the opening of more than a dozen new government universities and seven private places of higher education. Among them so ambitious projects as the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology.
The country's determination to produce high class institutions of research and learning comes at a price; a price that includes more than a generous budget. The thousands of students, who benefit from a King Abdullah Scholarship to study abroad, return not only with the latest methods of academic research but also with new perspectives and ideas. This means a fundamental challenge towards old habits and traditions. The lecture will therefore not only explore the great advances higher education in Saudi Arabia has made in the last decade, but also look at the obstacles it still has to overcome. It will try to answer the questions why there are still comparatively few academic co-operations between Saudi Arabia and Germany and how far the country still has to go before it can claim that not oil but knowledge is its most important resource.