Forum Goals and Organisation

Forum Goals and Organisation


October 19-21, 2018

Collaboration in Translational Research for a Sustainable Future:




Bringing together a combination of decision makers, strategists, research foundations, universities, researchers and practitioners, the Forum aims to represent a unique occasion for considering and discussing opportunities for overcoming barriers and realizing mutual benefits from collaboration in aspects of research, innovation and education of high shared importance. In the stages leading up to the event, proposals for research collaboration or other openings for joint initiatives to be presented and furthered at the event will be welcome.

The goals can further be characterized as:

  • Establishing and strengthening a network of key decision makers in the science systems of Middle Eastern and European research institutions
  • Matchmaking between teams of researchers
  • Finding solutions to overcome hurdles for collaboration; incl. institutional, practical (visa-issues or IP-issues) and cultural
  • Strengthening cross-border collaboration in linking research and innovation
  • Learning jointly, with and from each other:

Topics include:

  • Innovation and science policy
  • Strengths and Weaknesses in collaborative research between Science and Research within the Middle East as well as between the Middle East and European countries (strong and weak disciplines, issues in research & innovation systems, bilateral and bi-regional linkages…)
  • Four substantive research areas, and associated initiatives
  • Technology and skills transfer
  • Links to innovation
  • Patenting/ IPR
  • Quality Assessment/ Peer review
  • Basis for Strategic Allocation of Research Funds


Substantive themes

While the Forum addresses the spectrum of issues that impact on, and can help drive, research collaboration on issues of sustainability, four areas have been selected to serve as the focus of substantive sessions, namely Urban Issues and Solutions, water, renewable energy and non-communicable disease. All four are defined in a broad sense and with multiple connections between them. The focus areas may be viewed as entry points to research and innovation collaboration. Within each substantive area, feedback and input from prospective participants are welcomed up to the conference. It is envisaged that that process will continue, under the stewardship of scientific advisory boards established in connection with the event.


Hosting and participation

The hosting of the event is organized by the University of Tehran in collaboration with four other major Iranian universities, i.e. Sharif University of Technology, Amirkabir University of Technology, Tehran University of Medical Sciences and the Iran University of Medical Sciences.

Other key Iranian institutions to play an active role include the Vice Presidency of Science and Technology, the Iranian Chamber of Industry and Commerce, the Knowledge-based Companies Association, and the Iranian Venture Capital Association.

On the European side, participation will take place from, e.g., Austria, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Sweden and Switzerland, as well as by several specific research networks.

In the Middle East, apart from Iran, participants are expected from, e.g., Azerbaijan, Iraq, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Pakistan, Turkey, Syria, Yemen, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, Palestine and Turkmenistan.



The conference takes place in Iran, home to one of the world's oldest continuous major civilizations; with a history dating back some ten thousand years with historical and urban settlements dating back to 7000 BCE, country's first great city Susa (Shush), was built on the central plateau around 3200 B.C. (for a detail see The Iranian believe in human rights is dated to the Cyrus Cylinder which has been historically recognized as the world's first universal charter of human rights, created in 534 BCE. The Iranian believe in human beings are mirrored in the famous Saadi poem:

    "All human beings are members of one frame,

    Since all, at first, from the same essence came.

    When time afflicts a limb with pain

    The other limbs at rest cannot remain.

    If thou feel not for other's misery

    A human being is no name for thee."

For details see


Kish Island

The Forum is organised on Kish Island, which has a unique and strategic location in the Persian Gulf region, among tens of large and small islands. Reflecting its beauty and attractiveness, Kish Island is known since ancient times as the Pearl of the Persian Gulf. Its calm coasts are covered with coral sands that shine in the sunlight, creating a unique and fascinating sight. The clear coastal waters allow one to view deep into the sea and watch the beautiful movement of the fish. Diverse plants and native trees, as well as pleasant climate seven months a year are among the outstanding characteristics of the island.

Kish Island is host to many historical and cultural treasures. Ranked among the world's 10 most beautiful islands, it is the 3rd most visited vacation destination in the Middle East. The relaxed atmosphere of the island has changed it to a mental-health break resort. Foreign nationals wishing to enter Kish Free Zone from legal ports are not required to obtain visas prior to travel. Valid travel permits are stamped for one month by the airport and Kish port police officials. The official language on the island is Persian, but English is also spoken by some shopkeepers, residents and students who live on the island.

For detail see:

Travel guide to Iran and Kish Island

Foreign delegation/individuals could reach Kish Island via flights to Tehran, Imam Khomeini Airport, transferring to Mehrabad Airport and then to Kish International airport or via Dubai, the detail will be provided soon.

For those participants coming to Tehran first and then to Kish Island, the International relationship office of University of Tehran will arrange for the visa to be issued in any European country.

For those participants coming to Kish via Dubai, no visa will be required.

Forum Venue

The Forum opening and closing ceremony as well as a few panel and round table discussions will take place at Kish International Convention Center.


Forum Participation and registration

Forum participation is by invitation only; the registration desk will be opened on Thursday, October 18, 2018 at the residing hotels. No registration fee is considered for participation in the Forum.

Travel Expenses

Travel expenses from any destination to Kish should be covered by the participants. For the foreign delegations/individuals who arrive in Tehran, Imam Khomeini Airport, transfer to the Mehrabad Airport and to Kish Island and vice versa are planned, the transport and ticket costs from Tehran to Kish Island and the return to Tehran might be covered for the nominated delegations and/or individuals upon request.


There are many 5-star hotels on Kish Island. The organizing committee of the Forum has checked their facilities and has chosen one of the best for residing the delegation members. Free accommodation and meals will be offered to nominated delegations and/or individuals. Those who are willing to reserve the hotel by themselves, please contact the organizing committee for details.