Negotiating the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict:Track Two Diplomacy in the Past, Present and Future
Fellow, Baker Institute for Public Policy, Rice University
Director General, Economic Cooperation Foundation
Co-chaired by Professor Robert H. Mnookin, Harvard Law School and Chair of the Program on Negotiation, and Professor James K. Sebenius, Harvard Business School
Dr. Yair Hirschfeld, who is best known as the “architect of the Oslo Process,” will discuss the history of Track II diplomacy efforts in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and analyze recent developments in the region and the challenges and opportunities they present.
Friday, September 19, 2014
12:00 – 1:30 pm.
Pound Hall Room 100
Open to the public; a non-pizza lunch will be served.
About the Speaker:
Dr. Yair Hirschfeld is the Director General of the Tel Aviv based Economic Cooperation Foundation (ECF), as well as the Director of the S. Daniel Abraham Center for Strategic Dialogue, Netanya Academic College, and the Isaac and Mildred Brochstein Fellow in Middle East Peace and Security in Honor of Yizchak Rabin at the Baker Institute for Public Policy, at Rice University, Houston Texas. He has just recently published a new book entitled Track-Two Diplomacy: Towards an Israeli-Palestinian Two-State Solution, 1978-2014.
Dr. Hirschfeld co-founded an intense track-two, backchannel dialogue with the Palestinian leadership of the West Bank and Gaza, then co-founded the ECF, where the Oslo Process concept was developed. In 1992, Hirschfeld created the Oslo Channel (and headed the Israeli team), an unofficial track that became official on 20 May 1993; Dr. Hirschfeld joined the official Israeli negotiating team.
In 1994-1995, Dr. Hirschfeld was a member of the Israeli team that prepared the first Israeli-Palestinian blue print for the Permanent Status Agreement that has become known as the “Beilin-Abu Mazen Understanding”. In subsequent years, Dr. Hirschfeld led and participated in Track II efforts that prepared practically every phase of the negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. He also developed concepts and practical structures for Israeli-Palestinian civil society cooperation and was a major contributor to the EPS (Economic Permanent Status) model, supported by the World Bank and the IMF.
In 2011, Dr. Hirschfeld was both nominated as the Wayne Owens visiting Professor for Middle East Studies, at the University of Utah, and received the very prestigious Hinckley Fellowship. Until recently, he taught at the University of Haifa.