TED, the conferences dedicated to ideas worth spreading, is bringing a community-based version called of the conference TEDxRamallah to Palestine.
TEDxRamallah is a one-day event that will take place on April 16 in three venues in three cities: Bethlehem, Beirut and Amman. Events will also be streamed live on the organization website, simulcasts will be held in 20 cities – from Dubai to Reykjavik -- and you can follow it on Facebook and Twitter.
Although thousands of TEDx events have been held to date, this is the first one in the Arab world. A team of 10 citizen journalists, young Palestinians in Lebanon, are also being trained with an eye to covering the event.
IJNet spoke to Joumana al Jabri, a curator of TEDxRamallah and editor of Palestine Stories.
IJNet: Who is behind it?
Joumana al Jabri: Well, there's engineer Ramzi Jaber, who got the idea after attending TEDx in India and then obtained permission from TED to use the TEDx license, me (an architect and writer) plus a staff of seven people and volunteers of all nationalities from around the world.
IJNet: What do you hope to achieve with the event?
Joumana al Jabri: We hope to contribute to a more complete image of Palestine through enhanced communication.
For example, there are many inspiring stories of individuals within and out of Palestine that are overshadowed by the political status and the occupation that go unnoticed.
We also hope to bring international attention to key survival issues that pose major daily struggles to people living on Palestinian occupied territories.
IJNet: Who are the speakers?
Joumana al Jabri: It's a diverse group. There are Palestinians, non-Palestinians, people who live in Palestine and some from abroad. They also vary in disciplines -- from film, education, technology and more...Our lineup is almost complete, there are about 16 speakers and about four performers. We'll be announcing names two weeks before the event. Because of visa issues, some will participate by speaking from Ammam or Beirut.
A version of this article first appeared in the Arabic edition of IJNet