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Conference in 2006

Democracy in Iran, Middle East and Central
Asia: Past Traditions and Future Prospects

The conference 2006 on "Democracy in Iran, Middle East and Central Asia: Past Traditions and Future Prospects" on Wednesday, April 5 - Saturday, April 8, 2006 was a bilingual - English and Persian - Conference in Commemoration of the Centennial of Iranian Constitutional Revolution of 1906 in Northeastern Illinois University, Chicago, IL.

The 2006 Conference was covered by an article in New York Times and resulted in the establishment of Dr. Mohammad Mossadegh Leadership Fund (A permanent Fund) at Northeastern Illinois University. This Fund has begun giving scholarships to students in academic year 2006-07 and will host annual lectures on democracy and human rights.

The 2006 conference served as a milestone event at Northeastern Illinois University and in North America. There were several lasting legacies from the first two conferences "Mossadegh Conference" 2001 and "Iran and Guatemala Conference" of November 2003 at Northeastern Illinois University.

Democracy is the ideal and spirit and the prevalent discourse of our world today. People everywhere are seeking a greater measure of participation into their political and social affairs through democracy. Evidently, the Middle East and Central Asia are currently the center of this discourse. The US involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan and the question of the future of democracy in the region and the role of Islam in the polity of the countries in the region are issues that are both vital and critical and are debated throughout the world. The centennial of Iranian Constitutional Revolution of 1906, as a first democratic and peaceful revolution of its kind in the Middle East and in the mainland Asia, provides this conference with a historic occasion to critically review the traditions and prospects of democracy in the Middle East and Central Asia.

The following themes were the major topics to which the Speakers and Panelists of this Conference spoke:

  • Iranian Constitutional Revolution and Modernity in Iran
  • Democracy in Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan and Central Asia: History and Future Prospects
  • Iranian Constitutional Revolution and its legacy for the prospects of democracy in Iran and elsewhere in the region
  • Islam and Democracy
  • Viable Peaceful US Foreign Policies in the Region.
A significant number of well accomplished and expert speakers from the United States and Europe spoke at this Major Conference.



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