The conference is the 30th anniversary celebration of NSMES, which is an independent non-profit association for scholars in the Nordic countries working on the Middle East. It covers all subjects in the humanities and social sciences, from antiquity to the present day. Currently, the Society has some 200 members in Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden.
In addition to conferences, NSMES organises PhD courses and workshops in the Middle East and North Africa area and publishes various journals.
Finnish institute in the Middle East is a research institute and an active supporter of teaching and research of Middle Eastern studies in the Finnish universities. The Institute is located in Beirut, Lebanon and it has a senior representative in Cairo (FIME Cairo).