From 2004 to 2008, Iranian Alliances Across Borders (IAAB) partnered with the Iran Studies Group (ISG) at MIT to create an online resource guide which provided information for second-generation Iranians for collaboration opportunities in Iran. This resource guide was aimed at bringing together second-generation Iranians who have grown up in the diaspora, and Iranian institutions, such as companies, schools, and NGOs, to join in collaborative work during the visits of young second-generation Iranians. This project benefited both sides by enriching the experience of second-generation Iranians during their temporary stays in Iran and providing institutions with the fresh perspective and distinct skills of these Iranians with very little cost.
How this project benefits all involved:

The idea for this project arose out of a need expressed by second-generation Iranians in the diaspora for information about organizations/companies in Iran where they could find internship and/or volunteer opportunities. Many individuals in the participant group would visit Iran regularly, especially during the summers, and had the time, energy, and motivation to get involved in some type of voluntary activity or internship; however they lacked the resources and connections to accommodate such activities. The goal of Project Connection was to provide the basic resources and guidelines as well as the network (through partnerships with interested institutions) to enable such collaborations. The project created many valuable and lasting relationships that benefited both the participants and the institutions involved.

For the participants it allows the opportunity to:
  • become better acquainted with Iran, its culture, language, and society
  • gain experience on how an organization/company functions in Iran
  • contribute to positive activity, while learning new skills and abilities
  • srengthen bonds with Iran and make new friendships
For the participating institutions the collaboration allows for:
  • the transfer of knowledge from the intern/volunteer in new domains
  • the completion of document translation and necessary editing for the organization/company
  • the creation of connections between the Iranian organization/company and similar companies abroad
  • the introduction of new ideas and fresh energy to the organization while expanding the creative horizons of the organization