In another step toward strengthening ties between Israel and the United Arab Emirates, the first agreement of its kind for academic cooperation was signed on Thursday between the Younes and Suraya Nazarian Library of the University of Haifa and the National Library and Archives (NLA) of the United Arab Emirates.
The collaboration will focus on the exchange of researchers and experts, archival research, the exchange of collections, providing access to the resources of the libraries for researchers from both institutions and holding joint events and conferences.
"We hope that the agreement will also lead to additional events such as joint exhibitions, conferences and cultural events around common areas of interest - and there are many of these," said Dr. Moran Zaga, head of the Middle East Department at the Research Authority, University of Haifa.
The agreement was signed by the university's president Prof. Ron Rubin and NLA director Abdullah Majed El Ali, university library director Ms. Naomi Gardinger and Prof. Dafna Raban, the library's academic director.
Many materials that were blocked to the Israeli research community will now be accessible, and vice versa.
The UAE expressed interest in Israel’s library materials, digitization processes and innovative tools in the field of digital humanities developed at the University of Haifa.
"The library is proud to be the primary liaison with the Emirates Library and National Archives. The University Library is the first in the country to sign a collaboration agreement with the Emirates National Library and Archives," Gardinger said.
"We see the new connection as an opportunity to enrich collections and informational collaboration, which will serve the populations of researchers in both countries."