Science Technology and Innovation

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Middle East Region GIS map.
A GIS map showing vegetative cover in northern Tunisia produced through a joint USAID, NASA and World Bank remote sensing modeling initiative.
International Center for Biosaline Agriculture

Many of the development challenges confronting the Middle East and North Africa are regional in nature and require innovative solutions. Science, technology and innovation are critical to developing effective responses to these challenges, and scaling up effective solutions across the region. Our regional programs make use of USAID’s extensive country-to-country partnerships in promoting regional development through the use of science and technology. We invest in innovative approaches to development challenges to help countries develop sustainable and effective solutions. Our work includes the participation of innovators from a range of sectors—academia, the public and private sectors, and civil society—to create new solutions to persistent development challenges and foster local ownership of development solutions.

Impacts achieved by USAID in the region include:

  • USAID’s water programs make a unique contribution to regional water management by merging cutting-edge U.S. satellite data and NASA modeling capability with development assistance, resulting in real, practical, scale-able information that is put to use by regional water managers to help plan for and adapt to key challenges like climate change. Our work supports the government agencies overseeing water resources and remote sensing in Morocco, Tunisia, Egypt, Jordan and Lebanon by providing the equipment, know-how and decision-support systems to improve water resources management and decision-making.
  • Around the region, USAID promotes information sharing among members of the development and research communities and disseminates key regional research. OMEP makes use of webinars to bring together key regional stakeholders to address issues such as youth unemployment, gender and citizenship and qualitative research methods. Hundreds of regional experts have participated in or viewed archived versions of OMEP’s webinar series.
  • USAID small grants have been used to develop a series of informational videos educating youth from around the region on the role of civil society, its impact, how to get involved, and how to make citizen voices count. The videos have had thousands of views and support citizen engagement in the ongoing Arab Awakening. 

 

Last updated: March 24, 2014

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