Ibn Rushd Fund for Freedom of Thought

Members of the Jury of Ibn Rushd Prize 2017

Atta El-Battahani

Dr. Atta El-Battahani is a Professor in Political Science, he holds a Ph.D. from the University of Sussex, (Britain), and M.Sc, B.Sc in Political Science; and B.A in Philosophy from the University of Khartoum (Sudan). During 2003-2006 he was Head Department of Political Science, Faculty of Economics, University of Khartoum; and a founding member of Amnesty International Khartoum Group (1987-1989), and also a founding and leading member of Sudanese Civil Society Network for Poverty Alleviation (SCSNPA) 2002-2005. He served as Manager and Senior Advisor for International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA) in Sudan from 2006 up to 2011. Currently, Chief Editor of Sudan Journal of Economic and Social Studies. He did a number of consultancies for UNDP, ECA, IDRC, IGAD, OXFAM, IFAD and World Bank on Governance, Resource-based conflict, early waning, urban poverty and gender and development respectively; He is an Associate of Partners in Development Services (PID) and Gender Centre for Research and Training (GCRT) and Rift Valley Institute (RVI).  His areas of research include Development Impact of Ethnic and Religious Conflicts in African Societies; Governance and state institutional reform in Africa and the Middle East; He also published on Federalism and Economic Development in Sudan, Economic Liberalization and Institutional Reform in Irrigated Agriculture, the Politics of HIV/AIDS in Sudan, and Economic Transformation and Political Islam, and Democracy Deficit in the Arab World.

Ahlem Belhadj

Ahlem Belhadj, born in 1964 in Korba, is specialised in child psychiatry (at University of Tunis), which she practises and teaches in Tunisia. She also studied at the Pierre-et-Marie-Curie University in Paris, where she received a diploma in cognitive psychopathology.  She is deputy general secretary of the national union of university hospital physicians, a cofounder and advisory committee member of the Coalition for sexual and corporal rights in Muslim societies. In 1992 she joined the Tunisian Association of Democratic Women (ATFD), founded in 1989, and became a member of the bureau. She held two presidential mandates (from 2011 to 2013 and 2014 to 2016), which led her to receive, on behalf of the association, the Simone de Beauvoir Prize for Women's Freedom in 2012. Ahlam Belhaj is author of several books and reports on child psychiatry, child and women abuse, and women’s rights. In 2010 and 2011, she participated in the demonstrations of the Tunisian revolution which led, in January 2011, to the deposition of President Ben Ali. She has given countless interviews on the Tunisian uprising while several articles have been written about her describing her as ‘The Arab Spring’s Tunisian Heroine’.

Hassan Nafaa

Professor of Political Science, Faculty of Economics and Political Science, Cairo University, was born in the province of Beheira/Egypt in 1947, PhD in political science from the Sorbonne University in France in 1977.  He was a visiting professor at several universities and lectured at several diplomatic institutes affiliated to the foreign ministries in Egypt and a number of Arab countries. He served as the Secretary General of the Arab Association for Political Science and as the general coordinator of the Egyptian campaign against inheritance of power and then the National Assembly for Change. Hassan Nafea has received many awards including the State Encouragement Award in Political Science (1997 for his book The Reform of the United Nations) and the State Prize for Excellence in Social Sciences (2004)
He is author of many books, including The Reform of the United Nations 1995, Reform of the United Nations in the Light of the Troubled Process of International Organization 2009, The Arabs and the UNESCO 1989, United Nations in half a century, Social Democracy in France 1980, Political Systems in Western Europe and North America, 1991, From the inevitable conflict to the impossible settlement 1984, The European Union and the lessons learned in the Arab World 2004. Some of his administrative and academic experiences: Secretary General of the Arab Thought Forum (ATF, Amman): 2007-2009, Head of Political Science Department, Faculty of Economics, Cairo University, 1998- 2004 and from 2005 to 2007; Member of the Political Science Committee, Supreme Council of Culture; Editor-in-Chief of the International Policy Magazine; Head of International Organizations in the Egyptian Division of UNESCO, and a lecturer at the University 1977-1997. Member of the Arab Organization for Human Rights; General Coordinator of the Egyptian campaign against inheritance 2009, first general coordinator of the National Association for Change 2010, Secretary General of the Arab Society for Political Science 1987/1989.

Natacha Sarkis

Natacha Sarkis holds a Master’s degree in economics from Montpellier 1 University, France and has 9 years of experience working with international organizations and civil society on democratic governance focusing on transparency, anti-corruption, elections, political parties and local governance. She is currently working as an Analyst for UNDP’s Regional Project on Anti-Corruption and Integrity in the Arab Countries in Lebanon. Previously she has worked for the Lebanese Transparency Association since 1998, where her role involved project managing the set-up of the Lebanese Advocacy and Legal Advice Center. Other projects she has worked on have included Monitoring Muncipal Elections, the Campaign Finance Monitoring Project and the National Integrity System Project. In addition, Natacha is a Prime Consultant on Enhancing Transparency in Political Finance in the Arab Region for the Arab Regions Parliamentarians Against Corruption (ARPAC) and as administrative assistant she was conducting first hand surveys and fed to statisticians at IPSOS (International Statistics company), Beirut, Lebanon (from 2002 – 2006).