Commission on Science and Technology for Sustainable Development in the South (COMSATS)

Third Regional Consultative Workshop on National Innovation System and Intellectual Property (Arab Region) concludes in Tunis, Tunisia

Home   /   Third Regional Consultative Workshop on National Innovation System and Intellectual Property (Arab Region) concludes in Tunis, Tunisia

The Third Regional Consultative Workshop on ‘National Innovation System and Intellectual Property’ for the Arab Region, was held successfully on October 5-7, 2015, in Tunis, Tunisia. This workshop was hosted by the Tunisian National Commission on Education, Science and Culture (TNCESC). The event was third of the series of workshops organized by the COMSATS in collaboration with the Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO) and the Inter-Islamic Network on Information Technology (INIT). The first two of the series for the Asian and African regions were held in Islamabad-Pakistan (2013) and Rabat-Morocco (2014), respectively.

In line with the theme of the series of workshops, this intellectual exchange activity was also meant to benefit middle to high level policy planners, IP practitioners and academicians. The key objectives of the workshop were to deliberate on the contours of National Innovation System (NIS) and IP Regimes in the Arab World; develop capacities of relevant stakeholders from the Member States of COMSATS, ISESCO and INIT; as well as to sensitize them on the need of having strong NIS/IP policies for effectively meeting the challenges of competitiveness in the midst of globalization and rapid technological transformation.

The three-day workshop was inaugurated on October 5, 2015, by the Assistant Secretary General, Tunisian National Commission on Education, Science and Culture (TNCESC), Mr. Mohamed Kamel Essid. Over 25 subject specialists, IP practitioners, experts and government functionaries, including 19 participants from 12 countries including China, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Malaysia, Mauritania, Morocco, Oman, Pakistan, Palestine, Sudan and Tunisia, as well as well as local Media persons, participated in the inaugural session. Twenty national and international institutions/organizations were represented on the workshop.

On the occasion, Mr. Essid conveyed the greetings of the Tunisian Minister of Education and the President of TNCESC. He stressed the importance of an efficient and a well thought out National Innovation System and IP regime for any developing country to prosper.

In his address delivered by Mrs. Wafaa El Alami, Head of Planning, Information and Documentation Centre (CPID) of ISESCO, H.E. Dr. Abdulaziz Othman Altwaijri, Director General, ISESCO, expressed his confidence in and fruitful cooperation with COMSATS and INIT, and thanked the host institution. He also touched upon the importance ISESCO attaches to scientific research and technological innovation.

Mr. Riad Ben Boubaker, Director, National Center for Educational Innovation and Research in Education (CNIPRE), representing the Minister for Education, Government of Tunisia, welcomed the participants, and appreciated the holding of a regional workshop on national systems of innovation and intellectual property in Tunisia. He hoped that the workshop will provide policy guidelines to the governments of the region for keeping pace with rapid developments taking place in today’s world.

The Executive Director INIT, Mr. Tahir Naeem underscored the need of efficient NIS/IP regime in the wake of decreasing marginal returns on investments in physical resources. He noted that knowledge and technology have assumed a centre stage for increasing productivity and competitiveness of firms, industries and in turn the (national) economies.

In his message read out on the occasion by Mr. Abdul Majid Qureshi, Research Scholar, the Executive Director COMSATS highlighted the key role the present governments have to play in today’s rapidly changing socio-economic environment. He called for creating enabling environment for innovation by harnessing the creativity of their people and enterprises, developing good management practices particularly in small and medium sized firms, as well as facilitating linkages among different stakeholders.

The technical proceedings of the event spread over seven technical sessions comprised of talks and presentations that highlighted the importance of a robust and efficient National Innovation System and its impact on the promotion of a culture of innovation and economy, particularly in the Arab region. It included country/organizational case studies highlighting successfully implemented NIS/IP frameworks/models in the region were presented to underscore the importance of IP towards valorization of innovation and the need to protect ideas and advances in knowledge.

Some of the country case studies presented were on: Moroccan Innovation Strategy – A National System of Innovation in Morocco; Understanding the National Innovation System and Building and Implementing a “Context Sensitive” National Innovation System: The Malaysian Experience; How to Promote Industry-University Collaborative Innovation: The Case of Tongji University; Innovation System in Oman; Optimizing Government R&D Subsidies to Facilitating Innovation in Private Sector: The Experience of China; An insight into Intellectual Property and Creativity in Palestine; The Role of Technology Innovation and Commercialization Offices‎ in Egyptian Universities and Research Institutions; Managing Intellectual Property within the Framework of National Innovation System in Sudan; National Innovation & IP System in Morocco; Academic Innovation Assistance Program – Omani Experience; The development of intellectual property protection in Lebanon and the laws in force which highlighted the achievements of the Intellectual Property Protection Office; and Patents for Nurturing Incremental Innovations in Tunisia.

The participants discussed challenges faced by developing countries in implementing effective IP regimes, including problems of drafting and examining patents. Several cases of Arab innovation system and frameworks of intellectual property being promulgated in these countries, and their role in making an economy knowledge-driven were discussed. Key issues relating to patent filing, and a need for greater awareness of IP was stressed and benefits to researchers and small industry were highlighted.

Finally, a round table discussion touched upon various aspects of the themes and resulted in the key recommendations to the organizers for improving the state of awareness on the subject in the developing world. The recommendations to the organizers called for adopting a “utility model” law to take advantage of scientific research and innovation results; creating a Network of Intellectual Property in the Arab and Islamic countries to share knowledge, experiences and expertise; supporting Arab and Islamic countries on the development of regulations relating to intellectual property in the legislative, technical and human and institutional fields; as well as organizing workshops in the future in cooperation with the intellectual property offices on writing and documenting the patents.

A city tour to the historic site of The Carthage National Museum and to the touristic destination of Sidi Bou Said was organized at the close of the second day of the Workshop. The tour underscored the historical significance of Tunisia as one of the oldest civilisations linking the rest of the world with Africa and the significance of knowledge economy and incremental innovations even during the Carthage civilization. The participants were then taken to the Ez-Zitouna Mosque which is known to host Islam’s first and oldest degree awarding university.

A resolution draft proposed by Mr. Tahir Naeem, urging the need to continue dialogue on a sustained basis and affirming the resolve to promoting the subject areas of the workshop, was adopted unanimously by the participants/organizers of the workshop.

The concluding ceremony of the workshop took place on October 7, 2015, which was also presided over by the Assistant Secretary General, TNCESC, Mr. Mohamed Kamel Essid. He lauded the organizers for sensitizing the stakeholder governments on key issue of NIS/IP for their socio-economic development. Mrs. Wafa El Alami, presented vote of thanks on behalf of the organizers and said that the proceedings of the workshop were indeed useful in understanding the regional imperatives for innovation and the challenges faced thereof. M. Nour-Eddine Boukharouaa, Chairman of the last technical session presented the vote of thanks on behalf of the participants of the workshop.

Mr. Tahir Naeem in his concluding remarks thanked the host institution for facilitating the round of discussions and stressed the need for addressing the challenges of National Innovation System and Intellectual Property through awareness and assertive action. The representative of COMSATS, Mr. Abdul Majid Qureshi, encouraged the participants to give their feedback to improve the outcomes of the future events of this activity. The participants of the workshop were awarded certificates of participation.

Upcoming Events

4th International Conference on Agriculture, Food Security and Biotechnology, Rabat, Morocco
Nov 13 – Nov 14 all-day

[ Brochure ] [ Registration Form ]

Climate-related natural disasters, emerging diseases, rapid growth of World population, and political and social conflicts poses growing threat to food security. These havocs have incapacitated the food availability chain ensuing hunger, poverty and malnutrition around the globe. It is a debilitating fact that globally 815 million people, accounting 11% of the world population, were undernourished in 2016 (FAO 2017) wherein the third-world is bearing the brunt. This scenario, calls for more proactive, innovative yet sustainable approach for attaining and sustaining food self-sufficiency. Besides, the “2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development” is a call for action ending hunger, achieving food security and improved nutrition, and promoting sustainable agriculture.

The rapidly pacing scientific advancements in the field of biotechnology can offer promising tools, techniques, methods and practices for enhancing agricultural productivity while conserving the natural resources in their best form for the future generations. Agriculture biotechnology – one of the arms of biotechnology – is the key to sustainable food systems, value-added crop production, improved nutrition and green economy.

Keeping in view the importance of above-mentioned issue, the Islamic Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO), in collaboration with the Commission on Science and Technology for Sustainable Development in the South (COMSATS) and Inter Islamic Network on Information Technology (INIT) is organizing 4th International Conference on ‘Agriculture, Food Security and Biotechnology’, from 13th – 14th November 2018 in Rabat, Morocco. The Conference aims to provide an interactive platform to academicians, scientists and researchers to deliberate upon the burning issue of food insecurity while underpinning the significance of Agriculture, Food Security and Biotechnology.

Academicians, researchers, scientists, policy makers and implementers, and government officials working in the field of Agriculture, Food Security and Biotechnology in the developing countries are encouraged to participate in this international Conference.


The key objectives of this international Conference are to:

  • Provide a forum to scientists, researchers, technologists and faculty members to update their knowledge and share know-how on the recent developments in the field of agriculture and biotechnology;
  • Build and strengthen linkages among R&D/S&T organizations working in the field of agriculture, biotechnology and food security for effective South-South cooperation;
  • Make recommendations to the policy-makers for developing policies and strategies in order to support biotechnology for food security in the common Member States of COMSATS and ISESCO.


Applications for participation are required to be submitted through duly filled-in prescribed form to COMSATS and ISESCO, at the contact addresses given at the end of this announcement on or before Thursday, 1st October 2018.

Moroccan applicants may, however, send their applications till 30th October 2018 directly to ISESCO Headquarters, Rabat.


Travel grants and boarding and lodging will be provided by ISESCO, COMSATS and INIT to a limited number of individuals from the member countries of ISESCO and COMSATS, selected by the International Conference Scientific Committee.



  • Crop breeding, improvement, protection and management
  • Agriculture and sustainable development
  • Agricultural innovation and technology
  • Agriculture Engineering and Agronomy

Food Security

  • Trends and challenges to food security
  • Food Nutrition Security: new concepts and strategies
  • Food safety regulation and standards
  • Food sovereignty, heritage & industry
  • Non-timper forest products and food security
  • Ecosystem based adaptation for food security


  • Genetic improvement of crops using plant biotechnology
  • Functional genomics using genome editing technology
  • Industrial biotechnology
  • Food and bioprocess technology
  • Patent, biosafety, biosecurity, plant breeders rights

For further information, please contact:

Dr. Ismaïla DIALLO
Science Directorate
Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural
Organization (ISESCO)
Tel: + 212 (0) 5 37 56 60 52
Fax: + 212 (0) 5 37 56 60 12-13

Mr. Tajammul Hussain
Advisor (Programmes)
COMSATS Headquarters
Shahrah-e-Jamhuriat, G-5/2
Islamabad – Pakistan
Phone: (+92-51) 9204892, 9214515-7
Fax: (+92-51) 9216539

Mr. Tahir Naeem
Executive Director
Inter Islamic Network on Information
Technology (INIT)
COMSATS Institute of Information Technology,
Park Road, Islamabad, Pakistan
Tel: (+92-51) 90495169, Fax: (+92-51) 9247006

Workshop on Metrology for Least Developed Countries (LDCs), Gebze Kocaeli, Turkey
Nov 26 – Nov 27 all-day

[ Brochure ] [ Registration Form ]


The important role of the Quality Infrastructure, comprised of metrology, standardization, accreditation and certification institutions, in the process of socio-economic development of countries cannot be overemphasized. They provide a critically important technical foundation for industrial development and global trade, and functioning national measurement systems support in increasing industrial productivity and enhancement of product quality for international markets.

Many developing countries, particularly Least Developed Countries (LDCs), do not have adequate quality infrastructures, which limits their economic development prospects as products and services fail to meet the demands of domestic and international customers as well as requirements imposed by mandatory regulations. A component of this problem is that these countries lack the requisite technical expertise and knowledge concerning the development, operation and maintenance of metrology facilities, which technically underpin all other functions of the quality infrastructure.

There is, therefore, an urgent need to intensify efforts for capacity building of relevant organizations in the developing countries in order to enhance their expertise and upgrade their infrastructure in the area of metrology, thereby also spurring development in other areas of the quality infrastructure and ultimately facilitating industrial development, growth in trade and a rise in societal well-being.


Keeping the above in view, the Commission on Science and Technology for Sustainable Development in the South (COMSATS); and the TUBITAK National Metrology Institute (TUBITAK UME), Turkey; are jointly organizing a two-day workshop on Metrology for the Least Developed Countries.

The workshop will be held on 26 – 27 November 2018 (Monday-Tuesday), which will be hosted by the TUBITAK National Metrology Institute in Gebze, Turkey.


The primary objective of the workshop is to enhance the knowledge-base, expertise and capacity of the institutions working in the field of metrology in the least developed countries, as well as to prepare roadmaps towards addressing their needs to develop metrology infrastructures with the capability of supporting their economies.

The workshop shall also facilitate the building of regional and international partnerships for the sharing of approaches and best practices in the field of metrology.


The workshop will include technical presentations by relevant subject experts and scientists belonging to LDCs, Member States of COMSATS and international development organizations, as well as discussion sessions and laboratory visits.


The focus of the workshop is on the least developed countries, particularly those that are also members of COMSATS, namely Bangladesh, Gambia, Senegal, Somalia, Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda.

The policy makers, scientists and experts in the field of metrology belonging to the least developed countries and the Member States of COMSATS, as well as representatives of relevant international development organizations and donor agencies are invited to participate in the event.


Partial or full financial support will be provided to selected foreign participants from LDCs and Member States of COMSATS.


Mr. Omer Altan
Head of International Relations Department
Barış Mah. Dr. Zeki Acar Cad. No:1
41470 Gebze, Kocaeli, Turkey
Tel: 90 262 679 50 00 ext. 2901

Mr. Farhan Ansari
Sr. Assistant Director (Programmes)
COMSATS Headquarters,
Shahrah-e-Jamhuriat, Sector G-5/2,
Islamabad, Pakistan.
Tel: +92 51 9214515-7 ext. 209

Workshop on Water Resources: Expected Crises and Strategies of Predomination, at National Research Centre, Egypt
Mar 11 – Mar 12 all-day