IICAHDubai2016: Keynote Speakers, Featured Speakers and Conference Chairs
The inaugural IAFOR International Conference on Arts & Humanities 2016 – Dubai (IICAHDubai2016) is a multidisciplinary conference held concurrently with the inaugural IAFOR International Conference on the Social Sciences 2016 – Dubai. Keynote and featured speakers will provide a variety of perspectives from different academic and professional backgrounds on the conference theme of “Justice”. Participants in either conference are encouraged to attend sessions in both events.
IICAHDubai2016 Conference Chairs and Keynote Speakers
Professor Stuart D. B. Picken
IICAHDubai2016 Conference Chair
Order of the Sacred Treasure, M.A. (Hons), B.D., Ph.D. (Glasgow), F.R.A.S.
IAFOR International Advisory Board Chair
Stuart D. B. Picken is the founding chairman of the IAFOR International Advisory Board. The author of a dozen books and over 130 articles and papers, he is considered one of the foremost scholars on Japan, China, and globalisation in East Asia. As an academic, Professor Picken has devoted more than 30 years to scholarship in Japan, notably as a professor at the International Christian University in Tokyo, where he specialised in ethics and Japanese thought, and as International Adviser to the High Priest of Tsubaki Grand Shrine (Mie prefecture). He has also served as a consultant to various businesses, including Jun Ashida Ltd., Mitsui Mining & Smelting Co., Kobe Steel, and Japan Airlines.
Dr. A. Robert Lee
IICAHDubai2016 Programme Adviser
Formerly of the University of Kent, UK and Nihon University, Japan
A. Robert Lee, a Britisher who helped establish American Studies in the UK, was Professor in the English department at Nihon University, Tokyo from 1997 to 2011, having previously long taught at the University of Kent at Canterbury, UK. He now lives in Murcia, Spain.
His academic books include Designs of Blackness: Mappings in the Literature and Culture of Afro-America (1998); Postindian Conversations (1999), with Gerald Vizenor; Multicultural American Literature: Comparative Black, Native, Latino/a and Asian American Fictions (2003), which won the American Book Award in 2004; Gothic to Multicultural: Idioms of Imagining in American Literary Fiction (2009); Modern American Counter Writing: Beats, Outriders, Ethnics (2010), and collections like Other Britain, Other British: Contemporary Multicultural Fiction (1995); Beat Generation Writers (1996); China Fictions/English Language: Literary Essays in Diaspora, Memory, Story (2008); The Salt Companion to Jim Barnes (2010); Gerald Vizenor: Texts and Contexts (2010); and Herman Melville, four Vols (2001): Native American Writing, four Vols (2011), African American Writing, five Vols (2013), and U.S.Latino/a Writing, four Vols (2013). He edited the Special Japan edition of Leviathan: A Journal of Melville Studies in 2006.
His creative work is reflected in Japan Textures: Sight and Word (2007), with Mark Gresham; Tokyo Commute: Japanese Customs and Way of Life Viewed from the Odakyu Line (2011); and the poetry collections Ars Geographica: Maps and Compasses (2012), Portrait and Landscape: Further Geographies (2013), and Imaginarium: Sightings, Galleries, Sightlines (2013).
Dr. Zoltan Somhegyi
IICAHDubai2016 Featured Speaker
University of Sharjah, UAE
Featured Presentation: Aesthetic re-elaborations in the MENASA region and Central Asia
What are the aesthetic possibilities that walls can have? As dominant and significant – often literally unavoidable and uncircumventable – architectural elements they can both separate and unify, they can serve as obstacle and defence. Since the earliest times walls inspired artists to decorate and embellish them or, just the contrary, to try to open or to destroy them, or even if physically destroying them was impossible, at least to somehow open them on an imaginary level through the very force of art.
Within this context, this contribution explores some examples from leading contemporary artists originating from the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia (MENASA region) and from Central Asia in order to illustrate how the very phenomenon of walls, as well as many topics deriving from it, including separation, division, limitation of free movement, or even repression, can inspire, influence and shape works of art and even artists’ entire oeuvres. This exploration provides a deeper understanding of how the different aspects and issues of art, social engagement and cultural memory are interconnected and how these can be analyzed through high-quality and aesthetically efficient contemporary artworks that depart from the experience of walls.
Dr. Zoltan Somhegyi is a Hungarian art historian, teacher and writer; currently teaching at the College of Fine Arts and Design, University of Sharjah, United Arab Emirates. As a researcher of art history and aesthetics and with a Ph.D. dissertation on German Romanticism, he is a specialist in the art and art theory of the 18th and 19th centuries. Besides classical arts, his other areas of interest include contemporary fine arts and art market trends, with a special focus on the arts of the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia (MENASA) region. He has curated exhibitions in six countries, participated in international art projects and regularly lectures on art and aesthetics. Since its foundation he has collaborated with Art Market Budapest – International Contemporary Art Fair and he is the Website Editor and a Delegate-at-Large of the International Association for Aesthetics. He is the author of books, artist catalogues, and more than 200 articles, critiques, essays and art fair reviews.
Prof. Platon Alexiou
IICAHDubai2016 Featured Speaker
University of Sharjah, UAE
Featured Presentation: Visual Arts: Conceptualizing Justice
Since the dawn of the civilization, the abstract conception of Justice, this moral correctness based upon the application of fairness, ethics, equity, rationality and law, has been conceptualized by artists throughout the centuries.
The ancient Egyptians visualized the scales for fairness. The Greeks introduced the goddesses, Themis and Dike, and the Romans, Lady Justice, as protectors of the divine law. These deities were conceptualized, depicted and equipped with three items: A sword (representing power in the court), scales (to weigh the objective standards) and a blindfold (representing impartial justice).
Moreover, from ancient times until today, a great number of paintings, reliefs and sculptures in marble and bronze have been produced and placed in courthouses.
In corrupted societies, popular figures (e.g. Robin Hood, Zorro, Superman, etc.) offered justice. These legendary figures have been broadly conceptualized through comics, movies, murals, paintings and various items.
Additionally, courts presiding over justice or victims of injustice are frequently depicted by artists (e.g. numerous paintings and murals are dedicated to victims who suffered the injustice of Sacco and Vanzetti, US, 1927).
Platon Alexiou, Ph.D., is Professor of Fine Arts, Design, History of Art and Archaeology, currently Dean of College of Fine Arts and Design, at the University of Sharjah, UAE. Prior to this he was the Dean of the College of Architecture Engineering and Design at Kingdom University, Bahrain (2013-2015) and Professor at ATEI (Higher National Education), Faculty of Arts and Design, Department of Interior Design, Graphic Design and Antiquities & Works of Art conservation, Athens, Greece (1984-2013). He also taught as part-time Professor and gave seminars at Athens National University, Pandion University, Vakalo and Akto Art & Design Colleges, Drama/Theatre Colleges “Technis” and “Iasmos”, all in Athens, and in 2009 at St. Andrew’s College in Perth, Australia.
Professionally (1982-2015), as a freelance artist, designer and senior interior architect/manager he has been designing interiors, furniture & industrial products, graphics and fine art works: paintings, sculpture, digital art (he has had 15 solo exhibitions including in England, Greece, Australia, Bahrain). He has participated in 20 group exhibitions (Italy, Germany, Greece, and Bahrain) and his artwork can be found in private collections and museums including at Vorres Museum, Greece, Hellenic Nobel Museum, Greece, St John’s Monastery, Greece, Municipality Museum, Italy, Dorsten Cathedral, Germany, Kailis Collection in Australia.
He was awarded Special Honor by His Excellency the Governor of W. Australia Dr. Ken Michael in 2010 at the launch in Perth of the book Kastellorizo: My Odyssey – illustrated by Dr Alexiou (52 oil paintings). Dr. Platon Alexiou is a Member of the International Arts Critics Association AICA (2004), Member of the National Greek Artists Association (1993), and Member of the Interior Designers Association in Athens (1989). He has authored eight books and 23 articles.
IICEDubai2016/IICLLDubai2016 Conference Chairs and Featured Speakers
Professor Sue Jackson
IICEDubai2016 Conference Chair
Birkbeck, University of London, UK
Sue Jackson is Pro-Vice-Master (Vice-President) for Learning and Teaching, Professor of Lifelong Learning and Gender and Director of Birkbeck Institute for Lifelong Learning at Birkbeck University of London. She publishes widely in the field of gender and lifelong learning, with a particular focus on identities.
Sue’s recent publications include Innovations in Lifelong Learning: Critical Perspectives on Diversity, Participation and Vocational Learning (Routledge, 2011); Gendered Choices: Learning, Work, Identities in Lifelong Learning (Springer, 2011, with Irene Malcolm and Kate Thomas); and Lifelong Learning and Social Justice (NIACE, 2011).
Sue is also the Director of the IAFOR Education Research Institute.
Professor Steve Cornwell
IAFOR International Director of Programme: Language Learning
Osaka Women’s University, Japan
Steve Cornwell is Professor of English and Interdisciplinary Studies at Osaka Jogakuin University, and also teaches in the online portion of the MA TESOL Programme for the New School in New York. He helped write and design several of the New School courses and has been involved with the program since its inception. He is involved with the Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) (an affiliate of IAFOR) severing on its National Board of Directors (Director of Programme); his duties involve working with a volunteer team of 50+ to put on JALT’s annual, international conference each fall. Most recently, since 2012 he has been the Committee Chair of Osaka Jogakuin University’s Lifelong Learning Committee and is responsible for their evening extension Programme geared at alumni and community members. He is also the Vice-Chair of Osaka Jogakuin University’s English Education Committee which is responsible for suggesting policy regarding English Education and also responsible for developing material for the integrated curriculum.
Professor Said M. Faiq
IICEDubai2016 Local Conference Chair
American University of Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
Conference Chair Presentation: Translation as Culture
This contribution examines the culture of translation in the translation of culture. As the par excellence site for intercultural encounters, translation, particularly between civilizationally and power-unequally related cultures, demonstrates the need for an interface of translation, cultural and discourse studies to analyze the complex processes inherent in translating across cultures. The complex processes stem from the fact that translation involves the carrying-over of specific socio-cultural input (texts as cultural goods) to and recuperated by specific target reading constituencies. These constituencies have at their disposal an established system of representation with its own norms for the production and consumption of meanings (as texts) vis-à-vis self, other, objects, and events. This system stands-for a particular master discourse through which cultural identity, similarity and difference are identified, negotiated, accepted and/or resisted. Drawing on translation from Arabic, the contribution explores how constraints and disciplinary demands of a socio-culturally defined master discourse affect translation.
Said Faiq, FRSA, is Professor of intercultural studies and translation at the American University of Sharjah (UAE), where he was Chair/Head of department (2003-07, 2009-10), and Director of the graduate program in translation and interpreting (2002-11). He is a visiting professor at Exeter University (UK). Prior to his current position, he worked in Africa, the Middle East and the United Kingdom (Salford University, (1990-2003), where he was Director of Studies for undergraduate and graduate programs in Arabic/English translation and interpreting; and Leeds University, (1996-1998), where he was visiting lecturer in applied linguistics). He has served as consultant to private and public organisations for educational and related sectors and serves on a number of academic editorial and consultancy boards/agencies. He is an established figure in intercultural and translation studies and allied areas and has directed and examined graduate research (Cambridge, McGill). His publications include Agency and Patronage in Eastern Translatology (co-edited with Ahmed Ankit, forthcoming), Culguage in/of translation from Arabic (co-edited with Ovidi Carbonnel and Ali AlManaa, 2014), Beyond Denotation in Arabic Translation (co-edited with Allen Clark, 2010), Cultures in dialogue: A translational perspective (2010), Trans-lated: Translation and Cultural Manipulation (2007), Identity and Representation in Intercultural Communication (2006), Cultural Encounters in Translation from Arabic (2004).
Prof. Fadi Aloul
IICEDubai2016 Featured Speaker
Professor of Computer Engineering & Director of HP Institute
American University of Sharjah, UAE
Featured Presentation: Cyber Security Awareness: Challenges and Solutions
Security awareness is an often-overlooked factor in an information security program. While organizations expand their use of advanced security technology and continuously train their security professionals, little is used to increase the security awareness among normal users, making them the weakest link in any organization. As a result, today, organized cyber criminals are putting significant efforts in to research and develop advanced hacking methods that can be used to steal money and information from the general public. In this talk, the latest cyber threats against human users will be examined. Who is behind them and why? How can the security awareness among users by assessed? The results of several security awareness studies conducted among students and professionals in UAE will be shared and finally, some of the best and most recent practices to spread cyber security awareness will be discussed.
Prof. Fadi Aloul is a Professor of Computer Science & Engineering and the Director of the HP Institute at the American University of Sharjah (AUS), UAE. He holds a Ph.D. and M.S. degrees in Computer Science & Engineering from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA, respectively, and a B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering summa cum laude from Lawrence Technological University, Michigan, USA. His research and industrial interests are in Cyber Security, Mobile Applications, and Design Optimisation. He is a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) and the founder of several cyber security awareness initiatives in UAE including UAE’s Cyber Academy.
Prof. Aloul received a number of awards, most recently being an AUS faculty member and first person from Middle East to win the prestigious Airbus Global Diversity Award, the prestigious H.H. Sheikh Khalifa, UAE’s President, Award for Higher Education, Sheikh Rashid’s Award for Outstanding Scientific Achievement, the Abdul Hameed Shoman Award for Young Arab Researchers, the AUS Excellence in Teaching Award and the Semiconductor Research Corporation Fellowship. He has 100+ publications, which are available here, and one US patent. He is a regular invited speaker and panelist across a number of international conferences related to Cyber Security, Technology, Innovation and Education. He was the founder and chair of the UAE IEEE Graduates of Last Decade (GOLD) group, an organisation dedicated to advancing technological innovation and excellence for the benefit of humanity.
Dr. Fatima Badry
IICLLDubai2016 Featured Speaker
American University of Sharjah, UAE
Featured Presentation: A Just Place for Arabic in the Arab Identities of the Global 21st Century
The spread of English around the world is sometimes viewed as an extension of imperialism at the linguistic level that is progressively threatening the survival of national languages and authentic identities across the world. For example, Phillipson argues that “[g]lobalization introduces a single world culture centered on consumerism, mass media, Americana, and the English language.” Others, however, point out that globalization can lead to local cultures and modes of production appropriating the global by transforming, molding, and blending it into the local to result in “glocalization” (Robertson, 1992). Many researchers have emphasized that in the cultural arena anyway, “cultural forms are hybrid, mixed, impure,” (Said, 1994, cited in Kraidy, 2005, p. 70), a hybridization and creolization giving rise to “countless new combinations and blurring distinctions between nations and between civilizations” (Scholte, 2000, p. 24). The result is new cultural forms “of meaning, identity and community.” Therefore, categorizing people into fixed groups is no longer possible due to the porous and ambiguous nature of geographic, cultural, and social boundaries under globalization.
This presentation focuses on the impact of “Global English” on the definition of authentic cultural and linguistic identity of the young generations of Arabs living in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Based on a survey of University Arab students, I examine the impact of the use of English in education and in everyday life on young Arabs’ sense of belonging to ‘Arabness’ and explore the relation between the Arabic language and Arab identity.
The results suggest that despite the UAE leadership’s strong motivation and substantial investments in education reforms, the goals of preserving authentic Arab identity partly through bilingual education in Arabic and English remain elusive. A focus on pragmatism when it comes to language-in-education policy has resulted in Arabic, the national language, occupying a disadvantaged position which has relegated it to the status of a heritage language. It is concluded that although idealized notions of cultural and linguistic purity need to be reevaluated, the interplay between several sociocultural, global and linguistic factors must be considered in education planning to achieve the stated goals of developing Arabic to become the language of knowledge production and the future.
Dr. Fatima Badry holds a Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley, USA. She is currently a professor of English and linguistics and MA TESOL coordinator at the Department of English at the American University of Sharjah in the UAE. Professor Badry has had an extensive international teaching and administrative experience in higher education in the US and the Arab world. Since she joined AUS as a founding faculty member, she has served as head of the department of English and as graduate programs director at the College of Arts and Sciences. Her research interests are in the areas of first and second language acquisition, globalisation and higher education, Arabic sociolinguistics, bilingualism and cultural identity. Her most recent publications on Arabic/English acquisition and teaching include: Badry, F & Willoughby, J. (2016). Higher Education Revolutions in the Gulf: Globalisation and Institutional Viability. London: Routledge. UAE Bilingual education: Searching for an elusive balance. In Mehisto. P., Genesee, F. (2015). (eds). Building Bilingual Education Systems: Forces, mechanisms and counterweights. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge. Education in the UAE: Local Identity and Global Development. In Essentials of School Education in the UAE. Abu Dhabi, UAE: (2012). ECSSR publications. Appropriating English: Languages in identity construction in the UAE. In A. Al Issa and L. Dahan (eds.). (2011). Global English and Arabic: Issues of language, culture, and identity in the Arab World. Bern: Switzerland: Peter Lang. 81-122.
Dr. Christine Coombe
IICEDubai2016 Conference Keynote Speaker
Dubai Men’s College, Dubai
Keynote Presentation: Professionalizing Your English Language Teaching
Being a teaching professional is not simply about having the right teaching credentials and being in good academic standing, it involves a commitment to being innovative and transformative in the classroom and helping both students and colleagues achieve their goals. A dictionary definition of professionalism reads as follows: professionalism is the conduct, aims, or qualities that characterize or mark a profession or a professional person; and it defines a profession as a calling requiring specialized knowledge and often long and intensive academic preparation (Merriam-Webster, 2013). However, according to Bowman (2013), professionalism is less a matter of what professionals actually do and more a matter of who they are as human beings. Both of these views imply that professionalism encompasses a number of different attributes, and, together, these attributes identify and define a professional.
In this plenary session, the presenter will review the literature on professionalism and present definitions of what it means to be a professional. Other content to be covered include the myths associated with professionalism and the challenges ELT educators face when being profession. General and field-specific strategies for improving one’s professionalism will also be shared.
Christine Coombe has a Ph.D. in Foreign/Second Language Education from The Ohio State University. She is currently on the English faculty of Dubai Men’s College. She is the former Testing and Measurements Supervisor at UAE University and Assessment Coordinator of Zayed University. Christine is co-editor of Assessment Practices (2003, TESOL Publications); co-author, A Practical Guide to Assessing English Language Learners (2007, University of Michigan Press); co-editor, Evaluating Teacher Effectiveness in EF/SL Contexts (2007, UMP); co-editor, Language Teacher Research in the Middle East (2007, TESOL Publications), Leadership in English Language Teaching and Learning (2008, UMP) Applications of Task-based Learning in TESOL (2010, TESOL Publications), The Cambridge Guide to Second Language Assessment (2012, Cambridge University Press) and Reigniting, Retooling and Retiring in English Language Teaching (2012, University of Michigan Press). Christine’s forthcoming books are on research methods in EF/SL and life skills education.
Christine has lived and worked in the Arabian Gulf for the past 21 years. In this capacity, she has served as the President and past President of TESOL Arabia and as the founder and co-chair of the TESOL Arabia Testing Special Interest Group who organise the Current Trends in English Language Testing (CTELT) Conference. Christine is also the founder and chair of the TESOL Arabia Leadership & Management SIG.
During her tenure in the Middle East, she has won many awards including: 2002 Spaan Fellowship for Research in Second/Foreign Language Assessment; 2002-03 TOEFL Outstanding Young Scholar Award; TOEFL Board Grant for 2003-04, 2005-06, 2007-08 and 2009-10 for her work in delivering assessment training assessment in developing countries. Most recently she served on the TESOL Board of Directors as Convention Chair for Tampa 2006 and was the recipient of the Chancellor’s Teacher of the Year for 2003-04. She served as TESOL President (2011-2012) and was a member of the TESOL Board of Directors (2010-2013). Christine received the British Council’s International Assessment Award for 2013.