The Sultanate of Oman Hosts IIEP Governing Board

10 June 2015

The Sultanate of Oman, represented by the Ministry of Education (MoE), hosted an exceptional meeting of IIEP’s Governing Board, on 10 June 2015. The meeting was held at the Al Bustan Palace Hotel, in the presence of IIEP’s Director, Dr Suzanne Grant Lewis, and the Chairman of its Governing Board, Dr Birger Fredriksen, as well as distinguished members of the Board, including HE Dr Madiha Al Shibaniyah, Minister of Education.

A joint meeting, held on the previous day, under the auspices of HE Dr Rawia Al Busaidia, Minister of Higher Education, was attended by their Excellencies members of the Board of Education, Councillors and educational experts, General-Directors, representatives of government agencies concerned with education, and representatives of government and private universities in the Sultanate.

At the opening ceremony of the Governing Board meeting, HE Saud Al Balushi, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Education for Educational Planning and Development of Human Resources, delivered the Sultanate Speech in which he welcomed all attendees. 

In his remarks he noted that: ‘The relationship between the Institute and the Sultanate goes back a long way; the first participation by specialists from Oman in the Institute's programmes was in 1973. And the cooperation has continued annually in the various programmes offered by the Institute, most recently in 2014’ 

He emphasized that ‘the building of programmes and policies for the education sector should be done with a scientific methodology, based on the study of the current reality of performance and other analyses’, noting that the Government intends to adopt ‘policies and consistent plans to make a real and sustainable change in the educational system, including the development of solid and appropriate educational strategies’. 

HE Saud Al Balushi highlighted the importance of the meeting, which he noted would ‘deal extensively with the role of international organizations and partners in educational development globally, particularly with regard to quality and relevance, methodologies and modern strategies of institutional capacity building’, with an eye to ‘international trends in education funding and the growing importance of its planning’.

 HE Saud Al Balushi & Dr. Birger Fredriksen


The keynote speech delivered by Governing Board Chairman Dr Birger Fredriksen emphasized ‘the role of international organizations, and all international partners, in educational development worldwide, especially in the areas of quality and relevance.’

During two sessions headed by HE Undersecretary of the Ministry of Education for Educational Planning and Human Resources Development, papers were presented on a variety of themes. At the session on ‘Building sustainable capacity in policy and planning for the education sector’, IIEP Director Dr Suzanne Grant Lewis spoke about ‘IIEP’s approach to integrated capacity development, building institutional capacity and recent strategies’. Dr Maryam Al Riamia, Assistant Director-General of Planning and Quality Control, MoE, presented the second paper, on ‘The current planning situation in the Sultanate and IIEP’s impact on Omanis who have participated in its courses’.

The second session looked at international trends in education financing and the increased importance of planning. It included two papers: ‘Global trends in education financing and the raised profile of planning’, presented by Paul Coustère, Deputy Director of IIEP, and ‘Education financing in Oman’, presented by Bader Al Kharousi, Director-General of Human Resource Development, MoE.