“Systems of thoughts are composed of ideas, attitudes, and courses of action, beliefs and practices that systematically construct the subjects and the worlds of which they speak.”
– Michel Foucault
Kuwait, like all countries, is headed toward an uncertain future. The question for Kuwaiti law makers and citizens alike, is: “Are we prepared for what’s coming next?”
Over the years, myriad challenges have faced our country and continue to hinder Kuwait’s advancement today. These challenges do not reside strictly in the present moment but will haunt generations to come. If our democracy is weak, if our economic policies are unsustainable because they rely on a single, ever-depleting resource and there is no economic diversification plan for the future, and if our civil society has become disconnected, ineffective, and unresponsive to the interests and values of our citizens, we may well have reached our tipping point.
If, however, Kuwait society is positioned to face the future with a collective national consciousness and a firm understanding and acceptance of the challenges ahead, we can address, manage and rise above any issues that are presented to our country. Tackling them, however, requires educated and informed action supported by credible, concrete and well-researched solutions and fact-based analysis.
How does Foucault’s quote have application to Kuwait? His theories and writings addressed the relationship between power and knowledge and the role power plays in the evolution of public discourse. Constructive discourse is organized interdisciplinary scholarship that promotes positive organizations, relationships and modalities of change through research, dialogue and information exchange. RAI Institute was founded with this understanding and philosophical approach and with the goal of bringing these benefits to Kuwait.
Like other think tanks throughout the world, RAI Institute will advocate for the strengthening of democracy, sustainable economic policy, and the advancement of civil society. Our main aim is to steer our national discourse toward productive outcomes and to support decision makers with fact-based research on optimal courses of action for our country by providing objective insights and analysis of past, current and forecasted challenges.
The success of Kuwait depends on a number of factors including the development of knowledge in the professional sphere. Research institutes and think tanks produce the knowledge that leads policy forward and that is why they are foundational to democracy. RAI will create forums for public engagement and collaboration between academic, political and public sector leaders. Where there is a thriving think tank and research culture in a country, there can be dynamic and progressive exchange between the public sector, private sector, non-government institutions and the citizenry.
And so, we welcome you to join in our movement and to begin constructing the discourse that will lead this nation in the right direction.