The Project’s Goals and Objectives

The project’s main goal is to promote a cultural dialogue with Jordan and Lebanon that is stimulated by professional exchange. Project participants are working on professional solutions; at the same time, they acquire knowledge about the other culture, socialisation, society and social order including its religious and secular imprints by implicit learning processes. Thus not only dealing, but even collaborating with “the other” is learned and practised. In order to stimulate a dialogue beyond professional exchange, the events, which take place alternately in Lebanon, Jordan and Germany, attach importance to dealing with the history and society of the respective country as well as its cultural and religious imprint. The project participants will be able to make use of this international, intercultural and interreligious sensitivity acquired through the project; thus they can act as disseminators among colleagues, students, and society even already during the project time. This multiplier effect is obvious with regard to social work which is particularly called upon to build a first bridge to the receiving society in the direct contact with refugees, and yet in many cases is only insufficiently prepared. This is why the project focus is specifically on this discipline.

Including Bachelor’s and Master’s students from all project countries and from different disciplines into the project as well as the possibility for them to write their final theses about the within project’s scope of topics, arouses academic interest and promotes scientific activity. In addition, scientific assistants from all three countries are assigned to coordinate the project, but also included into the exchange; this will not only create the basis for collaboration in research projects, but it will also facilitate active analysis of the project topic by these junior academics and encourage them to obtain a PhD in this subject area. Professional supervision is guaranteed by a professor from the respective university. Gender equality is an eligibility criterion for dialogue participants. The interdisciplinary nature of the approach as well as the sensitivity of involved universities ensures the participants’ diversity. Possible issues related to a gender specific or gender neutral approach to specialist questions will be addressed during the dialogue.

During mobilities, the project participants are directly confronted with Jordanian, Lebanese, and German history influenced by the Islam or Christianity, but also with the countries’ cultures and societies; they deal with the countries’ social and political situation including forms of successful, but also conflict cohabitation and the role of social work in these national contexts. This is mainly achieved through an implicit learning process and, as an essential element, supplements the application-oriented interaction with the refugee issue in the transit and target region. Ideas from this exchange are taken up by the project participants in teaching at the partner universities by incorporating experience and results from the project; this could, for example, contribute to developing curricula of the degree programmes involved. Another goal is to create a sustainable network between the participating universities in order to establish structures for an intensive dialogue between Germany, Jordan and Lebanon in the long run. FHWS is establishing international collaboration with Lebanon and extending already existing collaboration structures with Jordan. Additionally, the project strengthens the regional collaboration between the participating Jordanian and Lebanese universities.

The experience gained, the heightened awareness and intercultural sensitivity, the ability for simultaneous international, intercultural and interdisciplinary cooperation will have a lasting impact on the individual disciplines and through them on the migration society; thus an important contribution to opening up the migration society will be made. New perspectives will be created: through the multiplier effect as well as via the institutionalised exchange between institutions and representatives with practical experience as well as from civil society during workshops and other formats more students and lecturers, but also interested members of the public will be included into the dialogue. The dialogue and insights from it will be described by the universities’ media work and a joint online platform and online publication. The aim is to establish shared publication channels.