Dear Aftab friends and followers,
On February 12, the Aftab Committee was notified by the Center for Iranian Diaspora Studies (CIDS) at San Francisco State University that the center has decided to take over the Aftab Prize for Best Creative work in Iranian Diaspora Studies and to end its collaboration with the Aftab Committee. The original plan by Aftab Committee consisted of the Aftab Prize for Best Creative Work in Iranian Diaspora Studies to be a joint initiative between the CIDS and the Aftab Committee. On that basis, and since that time, Aftab Committee has energetically collaborated with CIDS on this joint initiative over the course of more than one year expending our time and scarce resources to promote both the Aftab Prize for Best Creative Work in Iranian Diaspora Studies and the scheduled March 2019 First International Conference on Iranian Diaspora Studies.
We have attempted to communicate with the university on multiple occasions in order to clarify the reasons behind this sudden decision to no avail—the explanations provided to date are vague and dismissive at best. That decision – being entirely unilateral on CIDS part, and coming at the very last minute without any prior warning or discussion – is, to say the least, stunning to the Aftab Committee.