Facilitating the exchange of actionable insights and the development of practical policies

to support Open Science across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA).​

The Forum for Open Research in MENA (F.O.R.M.) is being organised by the Knowledge E Foundation, Knowledge E, and Gulf Conferences, with the support of our Advisory Partner UNESCO, our Host Partner EKB, and our Patron ALECSO. It will bring together leading international experts and key regional stakeholders, along with open-source and open-resource solutions and technology providers, to support the advancement of Open Science.

The movement towards Open Science is vitally important to ensuring the accessibility, inclusivity, and long-term sustainability of our education systems and scholarly communities. However, Open Science is also a complex and multi-faceted concept, and it can be difficult to know how and where to start. The problem is compounded by the negative publicity surrounding predatory practices, which has tarnished the Open Science movement.

Supported by UNESCO, ALECSO and EKB, our goal is to provide a forum for MENA librarians, researchers, government policy makers and higher-education institutions to exchange ideas and start new cross-regional collaborations developing Open Science policies and infrastructure. By bringing together industry leaders and global experts, and providing a mixture of outstanding talks, strategy sessions, networking opportunities and workshops, we aim to encourage participants to consider all the issues surrounding equitable Open Scholarship and Open Research practices.

F.O.R.M. will be held on the 26th-27th of October (2022), to coincide with the global Open Access Week initiative. Our hope is that this will become an annual event, hosted in a different country within the MENA region each year. This, our first event, will take place in Cairo, Egypt.





In 2021, Knowledge E organised an online symposium for Open Access Week, Towards a More Knowledgeable World: Open Access Research in MENA.
We had 13 expert representatives from global organisations and leading regional stakeholders including King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), Qatar National Library (QNL), Dubai Health Authority (DHA), the Al Qasimi Foundation for Policy Research, ORCiD, Crossref, Open Access Directory, Harvard University, and Knowledge E.
Our speakers offered a series of presentations providing effective strategies and useful tips for governments, higher education institutions, and individual researchers around the introduction and development of Open Access research and policies. This rich and engaging programme attracted over 600 delegates from 35 countries and 130 institutions around the world.
The recordings of the excellent papers delivered at this event are available for free on our YouTube channel.




Contact pr@forumforopenresearch.com for press enquiries. 


We hope to publish a selection of the papers (to be chosen by the Advisory Committee based on originality or research and academic rigour). The nature of the publication will depend on the papers selected, their thematic focus, and whether we feel the collection is best suited to be a special issue in a conference journal, or a book of essays. However, we will be making this decision after the event, once we have evaluated the proposals.