2018 Annual Conference

SQCC is happy to be partnering with Arizona State University for this year's annual conference. The theme of the 2018 conference will be entrepreneurism. More details to follow.

2017 Annual Conference

SQCC partnered with the University of South Carolina for our 2017 annual conference, "The Importance of Tourism and Ports in Economic Development: Best Practices in Oman and the USA". The conference was held on Wednesday, 8 November at the University of South Carolina. 

Conference speakers included H.E. Ambassador Hunaina Sultan Al Mughairy, H.E. Dr. Ahmed Al Futaisi, Dr. Harris Pastides, The Honorable Robert M. Hitt III, Dr. Yousef Hamed Al Balushi, Dr. Masooma Khamis Al Balushi, Mr. Saleh Al Hasani, Eng. Hashem bin Tahir Al Ibrahim, Mr. Faisal Amer Shuwain Al Hosni, Dr. David A. Cardenas, Mr. Phil  Gaines, Dr. Simon Hudson, Dr. Rich Harrill, Dr. Nathan Huynh, Mr. Steve Kemp, Jr., Dr. Jack Jensen, Dr. Marketa Kubickova, Dr. Drew Martin, The Honorable Joseph P. Riley, Jr.,  Dr. Paul Allen Miller, Dr. Robert J. Rolfe and Mr. Chris Stone.

Take a look at the full conference agenda, here
To view photos from the event click here and here.

9:00 - 9:15 a.m. Opening Remarks


President Harris Pastides and Her Excellency Ambassador Hunaina Sultan Al Mughairy


9:15 – 10:45 a.m. Value-Added Tourism: An Economic Development Strategy


Moderator: Dr. Robert Rolfe, Professor, Department of International Business, Darla Moore School of Business, University of South Carolina


“The Smart State Center for Tourism and its Contribution to growing Tourism in SC;” Dr. Simon Hudson, Smart State Chair, University of South Carolina


“The Greenville Perspective;” Mr. Chris Stone, President, VisitGreenvilleSC


“The Importance of Destination Image: Attracting Americans to Oman”, Dr. Rich Harrill, Director, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Travel and Tourism Industry Center, University of South Carolina


“Cruising Market in Oman: Current Trends and Future Prospects;” Dr. Masooma Khamis Mahmood Al Balushi, Assistant Professor of Tourism, Sultan Qaboos University, Sultanate of Oman




10:45 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. Coffee break


11:00 – 12:15 p.m. Tourism and Sustainability


Moderator: Dr. Drew Martin, Director, School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management, College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management, University of South Carolina


“Sustainable Tourism, Community Development and Workforce Development;” Dr. David Cárdenas, College of Hospitality Retail and Sports Management, University of South Carolina


“The Influence of Government in Sustainable Tourism Development;” Dr. Marketa Kubickova, College of Hospitality Retail and Sports Management, University of South Carolina


“Sustainable Tourism and the State’s Economy;” Mr. Phil Gaines, Director, SC State Park Service, SC Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism


“Sustainable Tourism;” Sheikh Faisal Amur Shuwain Al Hosni, Director General, Administrative and Financial Affairs, Ministry of Tourism, Sultanate of Oman




12:15 – 1:45 p.m. Luncheon, buffet served in place.


Introductory remarks: The Honorable Robert M. Hitt III, South Carolina Secretary of Commerce


Luncheon address: The Honorable Joseph P. Riley, Jr., Former Mayor of Charleston SC, 1975-2016


1:45 – 3:15 p.m. Global Supply Chain and Contemporary Ports


Moderator: Dr. Jack Jensen, Clinical Professor, Operations and Supply Chain Management; Co-Director, Operations and Supply Chain Center, Department of Management Science, Darla Moore School of Business, University of South Carolina


“Advances in Intermodal Freight Terminal Design and Operations;” Dr. Nathan Huynh, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, College of Engineering and Computing, University of South Carolina


“Keeping Freight Moving;” Mr. Steve Kemp, Jr., Senior Director, Terminal Strategy, Facility Operations and Maintenance, South Carolina Ports Authority


“Duqm Prospective and Investment Opportunity;” Mr. Saleh Hamood Ali Al Hasani, One Stop Shop Director, Special Economic Zone Authority Duqm, Sultanate of Oman


“Creating a Hub for the Future;” Eng. Hashem Taher Abdullah Al Ibrahim, Business Facilities Director, The Port of Duqm Company, Sultanate of Oman


“Oman’s Economy in a Dynamic and Complex Business World;” Dr. Yousuf Hamed Humaid Al Balushi, Economic Expert at the Office of Future Vision 2040, Supreme Council of Planning, Sultanate of Oman




3:15 – 3:30 p.m. Coffee break


3:30 – 4:30 p.m. Roundtable: The Future of Ports and Tourism in SC and Oman




For details on past conferences, please see below.

SQCC's 2016 Annual Conference, "Fostering Health Across the Lifespan: Shared Lessons and Opportunities in Oman and the U.S." was held on 26 October at The Rotunda, The University of Virginia.

SQCC's 2015 Annual Conference, "Agriculture in Arid Areas" was held on 5 November at Texas Tech University. For more on this conference, please visit this page

SQCC's 2014 Annual Conference, "Women of Oman: Changing Roles & Transnational Influence" was held at on 7 November at Kennesaw State University. To read more on this conference, please visit this page

SQCC's 2013 Annual Conference, “Oman and the Indian Ocean: Interaction and Exchange,” was held at the University of Chicago, in partnership with the Center for Middle Eastern Studies. To view the schedule, topics, and pictures from that conference, please visit this page.