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Jordan: Alternative Voices on the World Economic Forum

This post is part of our special coverage #Occupy Worldwide.

From October 21 to 23, 2011, Jordan hosted the World Economic Forum's (WEF) Special Meeting on Economic Growth and Job Creation in the Arab World at the Dead Sea. Jordan has had a long relationship with the World Economic Forum (WEF) since the mid-1990s, and a range of projects have been associated with the forum over the years with lots of glamor and hype.

This year as the Arab world continues to awaken and reshape its existence, a vocal and alternative narrative is growing, taking stock of such WEF associated projects in light of Jordan and the region's current challenges.

Over the past few days, I joined forces with an independent group of Jordanians and we co-authored a post published on the WEF's blog titled ‘Voices from Jordan: An Alternative Narrative‘ where we question Jordan's performance and track record with the WEF.

Through embracing a paradigm that strips economics of its political context, glazes over crucial issues with superficial platitudes, and fails to deliver, the economic dogmas of the past thirty years, promoted at institutions like the World Economic Forum (WEF), have failed to regulate markets or ensure equitable and sustainable economic growth.
As a group of Jordanians whose country frequently hosts the World Economic Forum, we have been reflecting on this involvement. Several critical issues arise: Click to read full post.

Participants captured during the Future of Libya session during the World Economic Forum Special Meeting. Image by Flickr user World Economic Forum (CC BY-SA 2.0).

Participants captured during the Future of Libya session during the World Economic Forum Special Meeting. Image by Flickr user World Economic Forum (CC BY-SA 2.0).


On Twitter, Farah Ghniem, asks:

It doesn't matter that Jordan is full of people with potential. Everywhere is. What matters: why does the system fail them? #OccupyWEF #WEF

Urban activist, Raghda Butros, takes stock:

An education initiative was launched in '03 with #WEF. Today the quality of education in Jordan is in sharp decline. #OccupyWEF

Economist Ibrahim Saif shared his lack of conviction:

I am not very encouraged about the WEF and what it offers to the marginalized, there is a need for a new thinking. That won't come from WEF.

While attending the entrepreneurship lunch, Dina Shoman, head of branding at the Arab Bank tweeted:

10 years of discussion on #entrepreneurship there is a failure to launch from regulatory and governments side #wef #jo

Her Highness Princess Ghida Talal, chairperson of the King Hussein Cancer Foundation commented and couldn't resist retweeting:

Too funny and too true not to RT “@ThorayaER: Schwab at #WEF introducing all Their Excellencies. So many Excellencies, so little excellence!”

For more reactions, join the conversation on Twitter camped on the hashtags #WEF and #OccupyWEF, and on the WEF blog.

This post is part of our special coverage #Occupy Worldwide.

  • samar dudin

    We can all declare war on WEF and certainly for many good reasons but the question that begs to be answered is : How was this WEF different after the financial crisis and The Arab Spring? has it changed in its structure vision style content ? Has it addressed reality , have the capitalists and wealth creators of the this world discussed how they have been supporting dictatorship regimes forever? have the issue of wealth distribution and fair taxation been discussed? Ethics of not mixing business with govermental powers addressed ? and yes i agree with many ..have they really assessed how successful have been so many inititiaves they launched ?

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