About the summit

With novel coronavirus (Covid-19) now present in a number of countries in the Middle East and North Africa we have taken the decision to postpone the THE  MENA Universities Summit 2020 until autumn. Our primary concern remains the wellbeing of our staff, delegates and partners and we believe this to be the most appropriate precautionary course of action. We are working on confirming alternative dates with New York University as a matter of urgency. Updated information will be published on this page as soon as it is available. If you have any questions, or are an existing delegate who hasn’t heard from us, please contact summits@timeshighereducation.com.


The fourth regional Times Higher Education  MENA (Middle East and North Africa) Universities Summit will examine how a global education can provide research and creative opportunities for students that concurrently wield positive social impact for the region. The summit will focus on higher education teaching and research models for the MENA region, while also sharing global perspectives on how to nurture a talent pipeline.

NYU Abu Dhabi is an ideal host for this summit – as an institution that is a decade old, its fundamental model of education emphasizes breadth through a liberal education core curriculum and depth through rigorous majors. Students at NYU Abu Dhabi are internationally diverse and are part of a global network that prioritises study away as an important component of the undergraduate experience.

Programme themes

A combination of keynote speeches, participatory debates, live polling, case studies and panel discussions, accompanied by a THE  rankings masterclass will support attendees as they consider these key themes:

  • The role and value of a global liberal education
  • Developing a research culture in the MENA region
  • Knowledge diplomacy

Click here to read more about the programme themes

Click here to view the programme

Why attend?

  • Meet with your peers and develop your network at a three-day summit and prestigious gala dinner
  • Hear from thought leaders from across the world
  • Engage in debates and share ideas
  • Share your experience with THE’s worldwide audience of higher education professionals
  • Join a global network of leaders from the world’s best and most ambitious universities, Nobel laureates, leading figures from government, policymaking and industry

Who should attend?

Hundreds of leaders from the world’s best and most ambitious universities and research-led companies will reflect on what are the optimum conditions for human talent to develop and how some of the key obstacles can be overcome.

Participants include vice-chancellors, rectors, presidents, deputy presidents, vice-presidents and distinguished scholars representing higher education and governments along with industries and businesses with close links to both sectors.

Here’s what previous attendees said







MENA Universities Summit 2018

The Times Higher Education  MENA Universities Summit 2018 took place 19-21 March at King Abdulaziz University, in Saudi Arabia, and was attended by over 300 leaders from 31 countries.

Programme: View the full summit programme and list of speakers

Podcast: Hear the THE  team and university leaders talk about their highlights and the hot topics discussed at the summit

Global partners