Rebuilding from Conflict – The Power of Education in Emergencies

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Date: Friday, 11th March, 2016, 21h00 

Duration: ~2hrs, including 3 talks.

Venue: Champalimaud Centre for the Unknown, Auditorium, 

In support to Global Platform for Syrian Students

Speakers: President Jorge Sampaio, Dr Jo Beall and Dr Sultan Barakat

Hosts: Anna HobbissAna Nunes, André Valente, Marta Moita

Registration can already be secured through the GP4SS crowdfunding.

You can now register through our  Eventbrite website.

Live streaming will start on the day of the event.

Imagine a society without higher education. No doctors to care for the sick; no architects to build homes; no entrepreneurs to start new businesses. During crises, like the current civil war in Syria, a generation of students is left stranded and unable to finish their studies. Without them, the future of their country is at risk in the decades to come. Who will  rebuild?

On the 11st March, Ar | Respire Connosco and the Champalimaud Foundation, in support of the Global Platform for Syrian Students will convene a group of international experts to explore the impact of the crisis on students, and higher education’s fundamental role in rebuilding society.

To move from theory to practice, former Portuguese president Jorge Sampaio will introduce how the Global Platform for Syrian Students places Syrian Students in universities around the world to continue their education. Come and join us in supporting these students. The world of the future is in their hands.

This event will be held in support of Global Platform for Syrian Students. The Global Platform for Syrian Students is a non-profit multi-stakeholders organisation, founded in November 2013, by Jorge Sampaio, former President of Portugal, with the support of a core group of institutional partners, namely the Council of Europe, the League of Arab States, the International Organization of Migrations (IOM) and the Institute of International Education (IIE). This Platform is unique in that it effectively brings together the efforts and the contributions of various stakeholders willing to back an emergency mechanism to support Syrian students

For this event your entrance can already be secured through the GP4SS crowdfunding.

Ticket reservations can be done through our Eventbrite website starting on Monday, 7th March.
Entrance is free and subject to availability.
Limited seats will be available to people without reservations on the event evening on a first come, first served basis.
People with reservations MUST arrive before 8.50pm on the evening of the event. After that, tickets will be given for people without reservations.

Live streaming will be available during the event at the following website:

President Jorge Sampaio

Dr. Jorge Sampaio started his political career as a college student at the Law School of the University of Lisbon. Following his graduation in 1961, Jorge Sampaio began a notable career as a lawyer. In 1978, he joined the Socialist Party. He was later elected deputy for Lisbon in the Portuguese National Parliament the following year. From 1979 until 1984, he was a member of the European Commission for Human Rights. He later became the president of the parliamentary bench of the Socialist Party. From 1989 to 1991, he was president of this political group. Dr. Sampaio won the presidential election in 1996 and in 2001 and served until March 2006. As President, his actions were mainly focused on education, social issues, human rights for all, European and international affairs. He was appointed in May 2006 by the United Nations Secretary-General as his Special Envoy to Stop Tuberculosis. In April 2007, he was appointed as the High Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations.

Dr. Jo Beall

Jo Beall is Director Education and Society and a member of the Executive Board at the British Council. A graduate of the London School of Economics, Jo’s past roles include Professor of Development Studies at the LSE and Deputy Vice Chancellor of University of Cape Town. She is a specialist in international education, international development, and cities in fragile and conflict situations, and a regular speaker at major conferences in these fields. Her work has taken her to Africa, Asia, and Latin America, with extensive periods of research in Afghanistan, India, Pakistan, and South Africa. She has written numerous books and articles on a wide range of topics including governance and civil society, women and development, and cities and fragile states. She is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences and was recently awarded an Honorary Doctorate by the Open University.

Dr Sultan Barakat

Dr Sultan Barakat is the director of research at the Brookings Doha Center and a senior fellow in the Center for Middle East Policy. He is known for having pioneered both scholarship and practice in the field of post-war recovery. In 1993, he founded the Post-war Reconstruction and Development Unit, a world-leading center at the University of York. His current research focus is state fragility and recovery in the Middle East, as well as the role of Qatar in conflict mediation. Barakat has been published widely, and has over 25 years of professional experience working on issues of conflict management, humanitarian response, and post-conflict recovery and transition.




Anna Hobbiss grew up in northern England, before moving to Cambridge to do a bachelor’s degree in genetics. She joined the Champalimaud Neuroscience Programme for a PhD in 2009, where she’s currently studying how neurons connect to each other, and how this can change their shape and activity. She’s been a member of Ar from the very beginning, normally taking a behind-the-scenes organisational role, so she’s excited to be taking to the stage for this very special event supporting a worthy cause. 



Ana Nunes has a degree in Biology by Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade de Lisboa and a PhD in Neuroscience from King´s College London. After being dedicated to research for more than a decade, she has also developed a parallel passion for communicating science to the society, using artistic tools, as a means to attract new publics and thus contributing to increase scientific literacy of the society at large. She believe that intersections between different fields of knowledge and people can increase critical and creative thinking. A better informed society is able to take on better decisions.


André Valente
Marta Moita received her BSc degree in Biology at the University of Lisbon, in 1995. She entered the Gulbenkian’s PhD programme in Biology and Medicine (PGDBM) in 1996. Her thesis work was performed in the laboratory of Prof. Joseph Ledoux, at the New York University, where she studied the role of hippocampal plasticity in fear conditioning. In 2002, Dr. Moita worked in Dr. Tony Zador’s laboratory as a postdoctoral fellow, where she studied auditory discrimination. In 2004, Marta Moita joined the Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência (IGC) as principal investigator of the Behavioral Neuroscience group and later her group moved to the Champalimaud Neuroscience Programme as one of its pioneers.






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