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Enhancement of Jordan-European S&T Partnerships

Final Report Summary - EU-JORDANNET (Enhancement of Jordan-European S&T Partnerships)

The EU-JordanNet project, running from 1 December 2009 to 30 November 2012 was in response to the INCO 2009 call, with the main objectives:

- support the national network of Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) contact points in universities and research centres (including thematic contact points);
- develop an science and technology (S&T) observatory on European Union (EU) - Jordan cooperation,
- help Jordanian researchers foster partnerships with EU researchers in view of preparing FP7 proposals;
- increase the participation of Jordan in the People Programme;
- train research administrators in the management of international contracts in the research area;
- develop synergies and complementarities with the SRTD programme.

The main activities of EU-JORDANNET focused on awareness raising for FP7 and training of re-searchers and small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in proposal writing and administrators in financial and contract management.

Six thematic partner days were held for the thematic areas of the FP7 Cooperation Programme in Health, Environment and ICT. Each of these events included a brokerage day to which European researchers were invited in order to establish partnerships with Jordanian institutions. In parallel to the thematic oriented awareness events, two events were held on the People programme.

Over the life-time of the project 14 of these targeted workshops were held, attracting overall 600 participants.

Since the financial and contractual procedures of FP7 are rather complex, two two-day events were held for training the administrative staff of universities and the private sector specifically on the financial rules and the procedures of submitting financial reports to the European Commission (EC).

HCST in collaboration with ESCWA has established the Science technology and innovation (STI) observatory that is based at the HCST, and once in operation will develop a monitoring and evaluation system based on quantitative indicators of the national research and innovation system.

Synergies and complementarities were developed with the SRTD programme. EU-JORDANNET focused on (Health, ICT, and Environment), while the SRTD project focused on the other thematic areas that are of interest for Jordan (KBBE, NMP and Energy). As SRTD had finished in December 2010, EU-JORDANNET supported the participation of Jordanian researchers at EU events (info and brokerage days) related to (KBBE, NMP and Energy) and disseminated relevant information among the interested parties.

Project context and objectives:

1. The situation at the beginning of the project

Quite a number of activities aiming at bringing Jordan closer to EU Framework Programmes have been carried out over the recent years. With the exception of the SRTD project, these activities had a regional focus: they were not only focusing on Jordan but on the entire region of the MPC. Numerous information and awareness events were held by these projects addressing the Jordanian research community as well as the SMEs.

50 information focal points were established by the PROMEDAccess project and assessed by the SRTD project, distributed throughout the country and in different sectors of the society. These information focal points - represented by persons - appointed by the universities and research centres as primary links / contacts between the Jordan's information point and the project management unit of the SRTD project in the HCST and researchers in universities and research centres to enhance the integration of Jordanian professors and researchers into scientific high-level exchanges (e.g. through joint research projects) and in international scientific debates.

To strengthen links to the important thematic areas, SRTD has supported the establishment of six thematic national contact points (NCPs): energy, KBBE, environment, health, NMP and ICT. These NCPs will focus on their selected theme and continue to liaise with the focal points and coordinate with the NCP at the HCST. Onsite training for the thematic NCPs at European NCPs hosting institutions was carried out by the SRTD with the objective giving the new NCPs hands-on experience of their role.

EU-JORDANNET worked as an incubator for the thematic NCPs, it helped them develop the action plans required to achieve the objectives of their establishment, they were also directly involved in the capacity building activities and the partner days that were carried out through EU-JordanNet.

Since April 2005, Jordan had an official NCP, hosted by the Higher Council for Science and Technology, after many years of discussions the S&T agreement between Jordan and the EU has been signed, with the aim to make mutual access to R&D funding much easier. In particular, attention needs to be paid to the new 'International staff exchange scheme' action of the Marie-Curie programme that aims specifically at strengthening research partnerships with third countries that have or are negotiating a S&T agreement.

So, on the one hand Jordan has been well served with FP awareness actions over the recent years that have also created an institutional framework in the country for providing assistance and information on the FP7 programme. On the other hand, however, there is still a somewhat scattered picture with respect to FP awareness since many activities were one-time events, little coordinated amongst themselves and often not very thematic-oriented (with the exception of the ICT theme, which is funding its own support activities). Furthermore, little is known in Jordan about the People programme, which would be highly interesting to Jordanian stakeholders (researchers, research centres, SMEs, ministries).

The objectives of the project

The main topics of the call in 2009 were:

- to improve the process of providing information on programs and funding in order to promote the cooperation of Jordan in FP7, addressing the Jordanian focal points as well as the researchers;
- to identify and demonstrate mutual interest and benefit in S&T cooperation between the EU and Jordan, in particular supporting the process of implementing the S&T agreement between Jordan and the EU;
- to share best practices through workshops and presenting the state-of-the-art and the prospects for cooperation in particular fields.

These topics were addressed by the following objectives:

Objective 1: Capacity building
Support the Jordanian NCP, the newly established thematic national contact points and the national network of FP7 contact points in universities and research centres by:
- enhancing the understanding of the structure and the procedures of the FP7 Co-operation and People programmes;
- training in management of international contracts in the research area;
- exchanging information and experience with European NCPs.

Objective 2: S&T awareness and cooperation
Improve science and technology cooperation between Jordan and the EU Member States by:
- creating awareness about the thematic areas of FP7 among the Jordanian researchers and the private industry through specialised thematic workshops;
- training Jordanians on how to write FP7 proposals;
- helping Jordanian researchers in creating partnerships with EU researchers;
- identifying the priority areas for S&T cooperation between Jordan and the EU;
- promoting the policy dialogue with the relevant policy makers in Jordan to enable a targeted national research strategy.

Objective 3: Information and partner service
Development of information facilities to provide a wide range of services to the Jordanian research community as well as the research administrators of the information points, such as:

- a comprehensive website with relevant information on:
i. the thematic areas of FP7, including open calls, and links to the official EC web services;
ii. a directory of Jordanian and European researchers and their institutions that will serve as a partner-search facility;
iii. an inventory of existing Jordan-EU cooperation;
iv. a mailing list of all individuals and institutions in Jordan and the EU, who are interested in JO-EU R&D cooperation;
- support of the help desk at the Jordanian NCP;
- training and workshops' material;
- regular newsletters.

Objective 4: The PEOPLE programme
Promote the PEOPLE programme in Jordan to increase the exchange of Jordanian researchers with their European counterparts through:
- awareness meetings in Jordan addressing the research community;
- training of administrative staff on the specific procedures of the Marie Curie actions.

Objective 5: An S&T observatory
Create an observatory on Jordanian research and technology cooperation. Based on a set of indicators it aims at comparing the changing profiles and positions of R&D actors. The indicators enable the research institution in Jordan to grasp in quantitative and qualitative terms its position in Jordanian and world scientific and technological production.

Objective 6: The SRTD project
Build on the results of the SRTD project and take over some of its activities and support the process of implementing the S&T agreement between Jordan and the EU.

Main results of the project:

In view of the above mentioned objectives, the main results of the project are described below.

Objective 1: Capacity building
Two two-days training sessions were held targeting administrative staff of universities and the private sector with a total participation of 130 attendees, exceeding by far the 40 participants that were stated as an indicator of success in the DoW.

During these events the participants were very attentive, interested and interactive. Many of them did not have any experience in FP collaborative projects; hence for them the subject was even more difficult to understand. Nevertheless, they appeared to have understood the matter quickly, as the various questions from the audience showed.

Those organisations that are already involved and face the problem of preparing financial reports (always a painful exercise that very often leads to significant delays in submitting the statements and subsequently in receiving the funds), administrators may need specific and individual assistance. It may be worthwhile considering to what extent such assistance on an individual basis could be provided by the Jordanian focal points.

Objective 2: S&T awareness and cooperation
Altogether six thematic partner days were carried out, two each for the thematic areas ICT, health and environment. Each of these three-day events consisted of an in-depth introduction of FP7 and the presentation of the current work programme on day 1, a training on proposal writing and an analysis of proposal ideas brought forward by the participants on day 2, and a small brokerage event on day 3; to which three to four 4 European researcher invited to discuss concrete proposal development with the Jordanian counterparts.

The 'Measures of success' stated in the DoW were 25 participants at each of the six events and eight proposals submitted in each of the three thematic areas.

In the case of promoting R&D and innovation associated opportunities to SMEs within the context of FP7 framework, JE identified a specialised UK company (PERA) and jointly contracted them in 2011 in association with the Jordan Chamber of Industry to undertake intensive FP7 awareness activities in the manufacturing sector community and support interested SME diagnostic assessments to screen and identify promising SMEs to associate in relevant consortiums with eligible members from EU. Measures of success in this particular activity by JE include: 101 SMEs attended the awareness phase, 9 SMEs undertook detailed diagnostic studies to identify their needs and potential content for FP7 applications targeted to be presented in the January 2012 deadline, and as a final stage 3 SMEs only submitted their FP7 grant applications, and one SME was awarded a grant.

The Higher Council for Science and Technology identified the national R&D priorities for the coming 10 years in scientific research fields by 14 sectoral committees; each comprises a group of experts representing various national institutions such as public and private universities, scientific centres, ministries and public institutions, private sector and civil society. The total number of participants was 147 experts, in addition to the members of the steering and technical committees.

Based on the analysis of the previous experiences and the demands posted for the future by observers and interested stakeholders, several thematic workshops were conducted via MIRA (INCO-Net coordination action within the Capacities programme of FP7) project in order to identify the common research interests and priorities between the MPC and the EU Member States by building on identified regional S&T priorities to create a dialogue platform, which will enable the discussion between relevant stakeholders from both sides of the Mediterranean to improve the S&T cooperation and foster the participation of Mediterranean partner countries (MPC) in the Framework Programme.

HCST is working on developing the national science and technology and innovation strategy and policy for 2012 - 2016. Five taskforces have been formed for the purpose o formulating the strategic plan for this policy addressing:

- institutional framework, policies and legislation;
- infrastructure and human resources;
- government financing of higher education and scientific research institutions;
- productivity and competitiveness of the national economy and private sector participation;
- the national innovation.

The national science and technology and innovation strategy and policy for 2012 - 2016 includes a cluster policy that could be used to support the development of key sectors within the Jordanian economy that demonstrate strong potential for innovation and growth. The sectors that will be considered are:

- medical services and pharmaceuticals;
- information and communication technology;
- clean technology;
- architecture and engineering services;
- education and career guidance services;
- banking and financial services.

The ICT events:

- number of attendees: 94
- problems or concerns highlighted by the invited EU experts:

There was a huge variation on the level of knowledge about EU-funding (work programme, objectives, calls etc.) among the participants. Some were aware of what it is all about and what kind of cooperation and projects are funded and how the Framework Programme works. Some didn't know what the WP is and what are the topics and what are the requirements etc. There were clearly people present that didn't attend the workshops in two earlier days.

The level of scientific competence and knowledge of MPC researchers is high but what is lacking is the competence in writing a proposal:

1) communication between different universities and between universities and public administrations (to share activities without redundancy of tasks);
2) communication between public and private sectors;
3) capacity of 'consortium - building';
4) lack of understanding the importance of a well-structured work plan for a project, for ex-ample the difference between a 'work package' and a 'milestone'.

During the discussion, it became clear that there was a lot of interest in participation in FP proposals but very little knowledge or related experience on how to do so. The questions that were asked, addressed the following points, some of which were general while others were of more specific nature:

- How to explore better the possibilities offered for Jordan in FP7?
- What constitutes a good and competitive proposal?
- How to explore the know-how of the industrial sector of Jordan in participation in Framework Programme proposals?
- How to use existing technologies in e-health and e-business at European level for the benefit of the respective markets in Jordan?
- How Jordanian partners can create competitive profiles that would encourage European proposals coordinators to invite them to become part of a proposal's consortium?

Defining the own research capacity and research agenda seems to be a practise that is not commonly accepted with some of the participants. In this context, it is also remarkable that only very few come with an idea or offer that is supported by a research team or laboratory.

'Technology enhanced learning', for example, caused some initial interest, two participants shared their own ideas for the specific target outcomes, but after close examination of the target outcome description, participants admitted that they had a wrong or incomplete understanding of the objective of the call and that they had to review their interest and approach.

Proposals that were initiated through these events:

Overall 16 proposals were submitted for ICT calls from mid 2010 until end of 2011 and the majority of the involved organisations had attended EU-JordanNet thematic partner days. Although no direct and individual support had been provided for the proposal preparation, EU-JORDANNET has certainly played an important role not only to raise interest but stimulated active participation.

The health events:

- number of attendees: 81
- problems or concerns highlighted by the invited EU experts:

Self-assessment of research competence and soft skills might be recommended to some scientists before addressing existing consortia. The following criteria might be relevant for good partnerships.

- Excellent science and publications
- Publications in international journals
- Awards and/or excellent professional reputation
- Reliability: capable of undertaking the tasks assigned
- Commitment: will fulfil their role and obligations.

- Partner's core activities and relevance to the project
- Sound track record as an organisation
- Availability of resources: co-funding, laboratories, management etc.
- Experience in EU projects is an advantage.

Presenting a thematic Work Programme of FP7 to a group of researchers and provide training on proposal writing bears potential risks, such as:

- disillusion when realising that any project proposal needs to respond to a specific topic, no funding is granted for project proposals not responding to a topic;
- discourage by application and evaluation process;
- discourage by scope of topic and minimum requirements (number of participants etc.).

A low degree of collaboration among Jordan researchers as well as insufficient investment and ownership were observed as key weaknesses for sustainable research projects.

General cooperation topics in health do not target the Mediterranean region with specific calls and the three SME-targeting topics of much interest to Jordanian SMEs were not eligible this year.

One possible weakness is the support of the ministry / university administration. Some financial support from the national sources of successful projects would enhance the interest of other potentially suitable partners - with the institution's own contribution to the project, not every researcher will care to join the FP7. There needs to be a sustain-able solution - for researchers intending to participate more fully as well as for those already present in the consortia - they should be recognised both by their own institution and by the national authorities.

Proposals that were initiated through these events:
Overall 3 proposals were submitted for Health calls from mid 2010 until end of 2011, one of them had attended EU-JordanNet thematic partner days.

The environment events:

- mumber of attendees: 88
- problems or concerns highlighted by the invited EU experts:

The main lacks for improving their participation and visibility into FP7 is the network of contacts and the need of making awareness on their capabilities at larger scale. Thus, the actions performed in this direction by the EU-JORDANNET project would provide tangible benefits in the short term.

It is important also making highlight of the already existing research infrastructures, laboratories and potential test-sides for many technology developments that could be really attractive for the EU researchers and projects.

There is a need for stronger collaboration with industry representatives in order to bring them more effectively into the R&D and innovation wheel as active participants and not only as passive recipients.

Proposals that were initiated through these events:

Overall 7 proposals were submitted for Environment and KBBE calls from mid 2010 until end of 2011, the main listed one in KBBE call had attended EU-JordanNet thematic partner days.

Objective 3: Information and partner service
The main achievement was the development of the project's website and its regular updating, it is described in detail below.

Due to technical reasons the mailing list of all individuals and institutions in Jordan and the EU, who are interested in JO-EU R&D cooperation, remained on the NCP server and was not accessible for the project partners through the EU-JORDANNET website.

Objective 4: The People programme
Various awareness events on the People programme for the benefit of the Jordan academic community had been organised in EU-JordanNet, two major People days, a video-conference, and smaller, half-day workshops.

Depending on the open calls, these events presented all instruments form the People programme: IRSES, IIF, ITN, IAPP, Euraxess (IAPP and ITN grants), cofund grants (International Agency for Research on Cancer, FAS, Aramout, Humboldt research fellowship).

Continuous support following the awareness event was provided to 25 Jordanian researchers. to help them in formulating proposals. Most of them were interested in applying to the 2012 ITN and IRSES calls, some of them were interested in applying to the IAPP call as well as other opportunities deriving from Euraxess.

The interest in these actions by Jordanian researchers and also the private sector (for IAPP) was very high and a number of proposals had been submitted, however with a low success rate.

To better understand the interests and needs of Jordanian researchers, a survey was carried out (23 participants answered) to identify the main expectations and interest regarding People / Marie Curie call for proposals (see D2.9 deliverable on the People day, including evaluation report). This document is also useful to ensure proper follow-up in future awareness and training events.

- Number of attendees: 137
- Number of proposal ideas discussed and/or supported:

Three actions have interested the Jordan academic community:

- International Incoming Fellowship (IIF). One proposal was prepared by the University of Jordan.
- Initial Training Network (ITN). One proposal was submitted by a Jordanian university but did not succeed, but another researcher was successful in submitting an individual application (and not an institutional one).
- International Research Staff Exchange Scheme (IRSES): one proposal was submit-ted to this call unfortunately without success.

- Problems identified during these events:

a. Interest in Marie Curie Actions is significant from the Jordan academic community. However, trainings based on transferable experiences regarding project building and writing would be an asset allowing Jordan academic community in being more competitive.
b. Regarding the negotiation of a successful IIF, the negotiation between his English host university and the EC was perceived as being very long.

- Proposals that were initiated through these events:

Overall 13 proposals were submitted for PEOPLE calls from mid 2010 until end of 2011, the majority of the involved organisations had attended EU-JordanNet thematic partner days.

Objective 5: An S&T observatory
The HCST has completed the 'potentials' part of the national S&T requirements potential study and is currently working in the second part: national S&T requirement which includes indicators reflecting EU-Jordan S&T cooperation.

A list of science and technology indicators relevant to Jordan have been identified covering are-as such as human resources; expenditure for research and development, scientific and techno-logical production including publications and patents, or collaborations. The study addresses a target group of a total of 2600 entities.

HCST in collaboration with ESCWA has recently established the STI observatory which is based at the HCST, and once operations commence, will develop a monitoring and evaluation system based on quantitative indicators of the national research and innovation system. As a result, in the future Jordan will develop a method for systematically recording levels of R&D activity by both public and private sectors which should assist in R&D planning, decision making processes and S&T and innovation policy development.

Objective 6: The SRTD project
Support to research and technological development and innovation Initiatives and strategies in Jordan (SRTD) project

This project was funded by the EU for a total amount of EUR 4 million to help the innovation and R&D sectors of the Jordanian economy. The project aimed at increasing Jordan's scientific and technological capacity by fostering research and innovation linked to private sector and by accelerating the Kingdom's integration into the European Research Area (ERA).

It also aimed at accelerating the integration of Jordan into the ERA by fostering networking of the Jordanian research community with other European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) and European entities and its participation to EU programmes and possible bilateral programmes funded by EU Member States, related to research, innovation and sustainable development.

SRTD in collaboration with the Higher Council for Science and Technology established a network of over 50 focal points within universities, research and innovation centres, and SMEs.

Over 750 hours of training in programme content, proposal preparation, consortium formation, contracting and finance, proposal evaluation, projects coordination and focused thematic work-shops based around the published work programmes. In addition, one-to-one meeting were held between Jordanians researchers and European experts.

Over 900 researchers participated in workshops, conferences, info-days, brokerage days and internship. SRTD supported participation by individual researchers in consortium meetings in Europe, where such meetings added value to the quality of the FP7 proposals.

It is worth mentioning that a second phase of SRTD project (SRTD II) will start during 2013 and will build on the results of the first SRTD project.

Potential impact:

The expected impact defined in the work programme for the 2009 call was an improved S&T cooperation between Europe and Jordan through providing access to information and by identifying priorities and the best partners for research. It is expected that this translates into a measurable increase of effective collaborations as well as less readily measurable improvement of mutual understanding of the respective research systems in Europe and Jordan.

EU-JORDANNET had stated to achieve this impact by the following actions:

a) Strengthening the cooperation between Europe and Jordan through a significant increase in S&T cooperation demonstrated by at least 24 proposals from Jordanian organisations in the FP7 Cooperation programme.

Since July 2010, after the first rounds of thematic partner days, until today there were around 60 proposals submitted with the participation of Jordanian organisations, with 20 % success rate.

EU-JORDANNET supported and enabled 17 Jordanian researchers to attend information days organised in Europe in order to create networks with other researchers for future proposals.

(Seventh Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Conference - 2011; Info day and brokerage event on call FP7-KBBE-6-2012, the Sustainable Energy Week, from 18 to 22 June 2012)

b) Improving the mutual interest and benefit in S&T cooperation between EU and Jordan through increasing researchers mobility by at least 5 proposals for the Marie Curie action of the People programme.

Among the various proposals that had been submitted, two researchers from Jordan received direct support for the project.

A report by the EC, DG Research, had back in 2008 identified a number of issues related to S&T agreements, and on mobility stated: 'A particular critical point is that despite clearly defined political declarations, e.g. in EU-third country summits, here is practically no progress in researcher mobility.' There are 2 People projects now with Jordanian partners (one running since 2010, and one under negotiation), out of around 20 proposals. Hence, there is some progress in researchers' mobility, however still limited.

c) A clear identification of the research priorities for Jordan in the fields of health, ICT and environment to help the Jordanian government formulate and implement national research strategies.

The National Research and Development Centre in HCST developed a national R&D plan in 2011 that contributes to the achievement of human security by maximising water, energy and food resources, raising the efficiency of their use and saving human health through research and technological development. The priority areas have been documented in the deliverable D2.10 'Draft priority areas and policy recommendation'.

d) A sound and widespread understanding of the collaboration possibilities of FP7 by research organisations and SMEs, encompassing both the procedural side as well as the scientific objectives expressed in the work pgrammes of the thematic areas.

In total 600 researchers form universities and developers from the private sector had been trained through the thematic partner days and the People Days. This is a significant number and has without doubt increased the sound understanding of the FP7 opportunities, clearly indicated by the number of proposals submitted during the life-time of the project.

e) Support of the network of the information focal points in the universities and research centres by providing specialised training on different aspects of FP7 (writing proposals, administrative, financial and IPR issues).

- Training mission of three NCPs (ICT, KBBE and Energy) in April 2011 in Brussels.
- Participation of the Jordanian NMP NCP in the first 2012 NMP NCP meeting that took place on 8 February 2012 in Brussels.
- Special NCP training was conducted for the Jordanian Environment NCP in Brussels in October 2012.
- A new NCP for People had been recently established November 2012.

f) Improving the mutual understanding of the research systems in EU and Jordan through easily accessible information on the EU-JORDANNET information system, the NCP website, and through promotion of the database of researchers in Europe.

The project's website was the main information point of the project targeted to the research and development community in Jordan with links to the FP7 calls and a number of supporting documents on specific calls and programmes.

The government supports scientific research through two main umbrellas. The first being the HCST, offers a myriad of programmes to support manufacturers and researchers in the country at large. The HCST aims at building a national scientific and technological base, and assisting in achieving economic, social and cultural development in the kingdom. The HCST has been given the authority to ratify the general policy of science and technology in the kingdom by defining its priorities, drawing up the programmes and plans arising thereafter as well as following up on their implementation and evaluation. The second umbrella is the Scientific Research Support Fund (SRSF) at the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research which was established in 2007 upon Royal directives, with the aim of developing human research resources and infrastructure to boost the country's competitive environment in ecological, water, and technological applications domains.

The Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation is responsible for the overall development model. Other ministries are occasionally involved in supporting research in their respective fields of competence. The Scientific Research Support Fund also seeks to back entrepreneurship initiatives and to incorporate scientific research methodology to help solve obstacles that the country's different sectors are facing.

The coordinating role for designing and largely implementing R&D policy is entrusted to the HCST. The HCST forms the base for science and technology research, development and implementation in Jordan. It is a policy-making body, which coordinates strategy and funds scientific and technological research, services and activities. The HCST has total financial and administrative independence and has the right to draw up draft laws and regulations as well as the power to ratify proposals to provide financial aid to national scientific and technological projects and programmes.

In a more recent development aimed at supporting innovation in the region, the United Nation's Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) established the ESCWA Technology Centre (ETC) in Amman in 2011.

Project website:


Mr Erol Kulahci, Agence universitaire de la Francophonie, Boulevard Baudouin 12 , 1000 Brussels , Belgium. Email:

Ms Rasha Smadi, Higher Council for Science and Technology, Jubaiha, Amman, Jordan. Email:

Ms Raghda Zaid, Higher Council for Science and Technology, Jubaiha, Amman, Jordan. Email:

Mr Thies Wittig, IT Consult GmbH, Haferwende 27, 28357 Bremen, Germany. Email:

Ms Hana Uraidi, Jordan Enterprise Development Corporation, Ikrimah AlQurashi - Abdali, Amman 11118, Jordan. Email:

Mr Abdullah Al-Zoubi. Princess Sumaya University for Technology. Ahmad Altarawneh St., Amman, Jordan. Email:

Mr Daher Daher. Royal Scientific Society. Jubaiha, Amman 11941, Jordan. Email: