Next phase of collaboration to focus on environmental research and conservation SULAIMANI (September 9, 2019) — American University of Iraq, Sulaimani (AUIS) and the Kurdistan Botanical Foundation (KBF) today announced an expanded partnership between the two entities that focuses on environmental research as well as environmental conservation. AUIS and KBF have been working cooperatively since 2015. Under this expanded collaboration, AUIS will support KBF with facilities, student interns and other resources, including dedicated campus space, to help KBF fulfill its mission in botanical science and research. KBF, in turn, will help AUIS in developing and maintaining new academic and program initiatives in environmental and plant-based research, conservation, and protection. Past collaborative activities include landscaping the University’s 145-hectare campus; securing a $15,000 grant from Ford Middle East and North Africa; and publishing the “Birds of Qara Dagh” bird-watching guide by the AUIS Press. “This new phase of our collaboration underscores the University's strong interest in environmental and life sciences,” said Dr. Bruce Walker Ferguson, AUIS President. “We welcome the opportunity to expand the range of our activities with the Foundation, which is the leading exploratory plant research center in Iraq.” “We thank AUIS very much for this opportunity and for the hard work done to make this a reality,” said Dr. Saman Abdulrahman, President of KBF. “We hope our new initiatives under this partnership will lead towards significant developments in environmental studies and conservation in our region.”
American University of Iraq, Sulaimani (AUIS) and the Kurdistan Botanical Foundation (KBF) were awarded the 2018 Ford Motor Company Conservation & Environmental Grant on December 4, 2018. The $15,000 grant will support the Center for Environmental Conservation and Research – a joint AUIS and KBF project. Speaking on the award, AUIS President Bruce Ferguson said, “American University of Iraq, Sulaimani and its partner, the Kurdistan Botanical Foundation, thank Ford for its generous gift in support of environmental conservation and research.” “KBF's scientific expertise and field experience can now join with AUIS's academic resources to develop new courses, programs and initiatives that benefit the Kurdistan Region and rest of Iraq," Ferguson continued. President Ferguson was presented with a giant check made out to AUIS and KBF in a ceremony at Ford Iraq – Al-Kasid in Erbil on February 4, 2019.