The next Gulf Exchange will take place 20 January - 29 January 2013. The application process is now open.
The initial deadline for the application is 1 December 2012. The second and final deadline for the application
7 December 2012.

The Gulf Exchange, a flagship initiative of Project Encounter, is a visit program for young influence-makers and future leaders from North America and Europe to the UAE, Qatar, and the Gulf, with an integrated itinerary to deepen understanding of the political, economic, and social dimensions of the Middle East. It is organized in partnership with

The 10-day program involves a high-level itinerary in the United Arab Emirates and Qatar, consisting of meetings with leading companies, government officials, and civil society representatives. Participants will have closed-door sessions with some of the more high-profile figures in the Gulf, including CEOs, ministers, social leaders, journalists, and others. The integrated itinerary will also include a social and cultural immersion program, with a range of unique experiences organized just for participants of the Gulf Exchange.

The Gulf Exchange provides a stage of interaction and engagement between citizens of the West and the Middle East. As with all of Project Encounter’s activities, the intent of the Gulf Exchange is not to support any particular point of view, political theory, or narrative, but rather to allow for a space of conversation that adds more depth to all perspectives.

The dates of the Gulf Exchange are 20 January - 29 January 2013.
Participants will be expected to arrive by 19 January and depart on 30 January, staying for a total of 11 nights.

The application process is open to current or recent graduate students and young professionals, who show exceptional ability and professional promise. In rare cases, undergraduate students may be considered for the program on a case-by-case basis.

The Gulf Exchange benefits from sponsors that help defray the costs borne by participants. Participants will have to pay for their own airfare from their home city to Dubai and will pay a subsidized rate for accommodations for the 11 nights ($800 for single accommodation, $400 for double occupancy). Other logistical costs and several meals will be covered by Project Encounter. Participants will be expected to arrange their own visas (most can receive visas on arrival to Qatar and the UAE). Pocket money for other meals, shopping and other expenditures will be needed, and participants will receive guidelines ahead of the trip.

For more details please email



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