Iran Academia plans to deliver the very first open online course (MOOC) in Persian on transitional justice processes. The course targets students from countries with histories of mass atrocities, such as Iran, who are denied access to education on issues related to accountability and truth-seeking. It provides students with the opportunity to learn about judicial and non-judicial mechanisms needed for restoring the dignity of victims and finding durable solutions in fragile societies.
Gross human rights violations including crimes against humanity characterise Iran's history. Unmarked mass graves dot its earth as victims and survivors are in a constant battle against forced erasure. Justice and accountability mechanisms are absent while public and academic debates concerning the legacy of past atrocities have been persistently repressed. To date, no educational programme exists in Persian for students to learn about the pillars of transitional justice.
Iran Academia is a leading institution in providing free and accessible education for Persian speaking students, including through MOOCs. The open online course on transitional justice will help fill the existing educational gap by delivering an eight-week course consisting of video lectures by Iranian and non-Iranian academics and practitioners, interviews, tests, and a discussion forum. Iran Academia will also translate resources, including academic pieces, previously not available in Persian.
This project has the potential to educate hundreds if not thousands of Persian speaking students from all walks of life, including journalists and lawyers, about the key pillars of transitional justice: truth, justice, reparation and guarantees of non-recurrence. By producing a range of materials in Persian and creating a forum for discussion, the project aims to empower students to generate and contribute to much-needed debates about how to redress ongoing legacies of mass violence.