Qatar University

02/27/2024 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 02/27/2024 05:26

QU Organizes a Workshop Titled “The National Identity in Qatar”

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The Social and Economic Survey Research Institute (SESRI) at Qatar University (QU) organized a workshop titled "The National Identity in Qatar." The workshop was attended by HE Mr. Khalid bin Nasser bin Ghanim Al-Maadheed, a member of Qatar's Shura Council and the Director of Wijdan Cultural Center; Dr. Ahmed Abdullah Al-Buainain, the Secretary-General of Qatar National Archive; and Dr. Ibrahim Muhammad Al-Samih, Director of the Community Police Department. Also, Prof. Kaltham Al-Ghanim, the Director of SESRI, along with stakeholders, researchers, and academics interested in this field, were present.

The workshop aims to define the concept of national identity in the State of Qatar through scientifically based studies, contribute to the scientific field related to national identity in Qatar, and connect researchers with stakeholders, beneficiaries, and relevant parties in both the private and public sectors to discuss their experiences on this subject. The workshop also seeks to share and discuss the study's results.

Dr. Ahmed Abdullah Al-Buainain, the Secretary-General of the Qatar National Archive, praised the workshop's significance, stating, "This workshop highlights the importance of understanding and enhancing our national identity, a cornerstone for constructing and advancing societies and nations. It distinguishes each country through its culture, social norms, policies, and civilization. National identity serves as the cultural code for societies, facing internal and external challenges and necessitating intensive efforts to preserve and enhance it."
Dr. Al-Buainain added, "The role of the Qatar National Archive in this context cannot be ignored. The institution plays a vital role in preserving the national memory and enhancing Qatari identity by preserving documents and historical records integral to our cultural and civilizational heritage. The Qatar National Archive also facilitates access to these resources for researchers, academics, and the public, deepening our understanding of the past and guiding our future path."

Highlighting the role of state institutions, Dr. Al-Buainain said, "In the face of a changing world and the numerous challenges to our national identity, educational and research institutions, such as QU and SESRI, must contribute to monitoring these challenges and proposing public policies that help preserve and enhance our identity. These workshops represent a unique opportunity to exchange ideas and experiences and shape a future that maintains our national identity in the face of global challenges."

In her speech, Prof. Kaltham Al-Ghanim, Director of SESRI at QU, stated, "This study measures levels of adherence to national identity and provides reliable data on the determinants of national identity. Data collected from a representative model of citizens, totaling 1202, resulted in scientific findings that will contribute to enhancing scientific knowledge about national identity and its challenges."

Prof. Al-Ghanim added, "The goal of our activity today is to convey these results to relevant parties and researchers, discuss the study's results, clarify the concept, characteristics, and threats to national identity in Qatar, and promote collaboration, idea exchange, and contribution to knowledge in the field of national identity."

The workshop included a presentation of the study's results by researcher Fahad Al-Buainain and a panel discussion with the participation of Mr. Khalid bin Nasser bin Ghanim Al-Maadheed, a member of Qatar's Shura Council and the Director of Wijdan Cultural Center; Dr. Jassim Sultan, a Qatari thinker and strategic advisor; Prof. Hassan Al-Sayed, a constitutional law professor at QU; Ms. Maryam Yassin Al-Hammadi, Director of the Department of Culture and Arts at the Ministry of Culture; and Dr. Buthaina Al-Janahi, the founder and CEO of Qalam Hebr Company.
The concluding remarks underscored several key points imperative for the preservation and enhancement of Qatari national identity. Firstly, there is an emphasis on the ongoing application of studies that delve into the evolution of national identity over time, fostering a comprehensive understanding of its dynamic nature. Additionally, a crucial aspect involves acknowledging the potential pitfalls of veering away from the Arabic language, as it is intricately linked to societal identity. This necessitates the implementation of studies aimed at safeguarding the Arabic language.

Moreover, the significance of parental guidance in instilling socially acceptable values in Qatari society is highlighted, recognizing the pivotal role parents play in shaping the perspectives of the younger generation. Public institutions are urged to play a vital role in educating Qatari families about the potential repercussions of relying heavily on domestic workers, emphasizing the potential negative impact on Qatari identity, particularly in the context of family life and child upbringing.

The workshop stressed the paramount importance of speaking Arabic with children and promoting the use of the Arabic language in educational and work places. Furthermore, it underscored the need to instill national values in the youth and foster a commitment to the elements that constitute national identity. Building on the study's findings, which indicate high levels of pride in national identity and belonging, it is deemed necessary to continue existing initiatives such as National Day celebrations and adherence to official dress codes. These activities serve as vital components in reinforcing and perpetuating the rich tapestry of Qatari national identity.