Pathways for Mutual Respect (PFMR) is an NGO from the USA. This organization focuses on fostering mutual respect in transforming interfaith relations towards peaceful living and a common good. It was founded in 2006 by a few likeminded people, led by John Hartley, the current director of PFMR. This non-religious organization has collaborated with premier academic institutions, government bodies and religiously grounded religious centres.
Pathways Institute was conceptualized and developed by PFMR. Its first training was conducted at the Yale University in 2009. This 2 week training has been attended by many young scholars from top universities in the USA and abroad, and interfaith leaders from more than 30 different countries.
In 2013, the institute was launched in Asia and hosted by Department of Malay Studies, National University of Singapore with the full support of its director, Professor Syed Farid Alatas. Among the 10 speakers for this 1 week training were Professor Chandra Muzaffar, Professor David Johnston, Professor Alatas and Reverend Malcom Tan. Participants came from various countries in this region.
This institute was birthed in Asia through the vision and leadership of PFMR’s new Asia Director, Norani Abu Bakar, the founder of The Blue Ribbon. It was also made possible only through the commitment and support from PFMR team in the USA, especially John Hartley and by the endorsement from Professor Miroslav Volf, the head of Yale Centre for Faith and Culture (YCFC), and Joseph Cumming, the director of Reconciliation Program at YCFC.
PFMR team is now planning in running its 2nd Pathways Singapore Institute in 2016.