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Middle East Centre

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Middle East Centre
London School of Economics and Political Science
Tower 1, 10th Floor, Room 10.01
Houghton Street
London WC2A 2AE 

Sandra Sfeir
+44 (0)20 7955 6198


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The Political Economy of the Energy, Finance and Security in the UAE: between the Majilis and the Market|

On Tuesday 21 October, Dr Karen Young will present the her new book, in which she argues that conflicts surrounding the finance, energy and security sectors in the United Arab Emirates are results of institutional constraints which are exacerbated by federal tensions between emirates, international political alliances tied to investment opportunities and access, and demographic challenges.


Wrapped in the Flag of Israel: Mizrahi Single Mothers and Bureaucratic Torture|

In this lecture and book launch on Monday 27 October, Professor Smadar Lavie will discuss social protest movements from the 2003 Single Mothers’ March led by Mizrahi Vicky Knafo, to the “Tahrir is Here” Israeli mass protests of summer 2011.


High-Risk Activism and Popular Struggle Against the Israeli Occupation of the West Bank|

Since 2002, local Palestinian popular committees have led a grass roots struggle against the separation barrier Israel has constructed, mostly on Palestinian land inside the West Bank. Israelis and internationals have joined this social movement. On Tuesday 4 November, Professor Joel Beinin will explore the history of the struggle and the motivations of Israelis for participating in it.


Workers in the Arab Uprisings: Social Movement Theory, Political Economy and Class|

On Wednesday 5 November, Joel Beinin his recent paper 'Arab Workers and the Popular Uprisings of 2011'. The paper assesses the role of workers and the working class in the Arab uprisings of 2011, drawing on political economy, social movement theory, the Dynamics of Contention, and comparisons with the Solidarnosc movement in Poland. 

Register to attend|


New Trends of Women's Activism During and After the Arab Uprisings|

On Thursday 6 November, Dr Aitemad Muhanna-Matar presents the findings of field research conducted in five countries (Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco, Yemen and the occupied Palestinian territory) in 2013. The research focuses on the emergence of young female leaders who have shaped a new form of women’s activism that merges Islamism with feminism.


Dr Steffen Hertog for ft.com
Prescription to Reform the World of Arab Business|

Most think the Arab corporate sector needs to increase its contribution to national development. What is holding it back? There are two critical and closely related factors, explains Dr Steffen Hertog in his latest article for the Financial Times: its weak position vis-à-vis the state and its limited role in the labour market. 


Dr Karen Young for the Washington Institute
The Politics of Small Slights in the GCC|

Although several Gulf Cooperation Council states participated in the recent U.S.-led airstrikes in Syria, the rift between GCC governments continues to have serious consequences. Writing for the Washington Institute, Karen Young argues that political differences between Gulf countries are more complex than simply 'Qatar vs. the rest'.

Professor Toby Dodge for IISS
Can Iraq be Saved?|

In the latest issue of Survival: Global Politics and Strategy published by the IISS, Professor Toby Dodge explores if and how Iraq can be saved, while emphasising that using the Sykes-Picot agreement to explain the Middle East falsely extrapolates from a single moment, leading to poor policy.


Iraq: Causes and Consequences of the Present Crisis|

The seizure of Mosul by the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant and their rapid move south towards Baghdad has thrown Iraq into another post-regime change crisis. This panel examines the identity and background of the fighters in northern Iraq, as well as the root causes behind the violence. Prof Toby Dodge, Amb Feisal Istrabadi and Dr Faleh Jabar also explore why the Iraqi armed forces collapsed so quickly,  explaining how the political and constitutional system, which was set up in the aftermath of regime change, has contributed to the current situation.

Listen to the podcast|


Decoding Transition: the case of Egypt|

In this lecture, Professor Bahgat Korani explores how, although Tunisia was the direct trigger of the 'Arab Spring', Egypt is its landscape. What happens for the transition in this most populous country of the Arab world will, more than in Yemen or neighbouring Libya, shape this 'Spring's' outcome.

Listen to the podcast|


LSE Middle East Centre and Kuwait Programme Public Event 

Oman's Foreign Policy Under Sultan Qaboos: Independent, but to what Extent?|

Dr Marc Valeri explores how, although Oman’s foreign policy under Qaboos is usually considered to be pragmatic and independent – as illustrated by the sultanate’s role in facilitating the conclusion of the Iran-P5+1 nuclear deal in 2013 and its announcement that it would not join a hypothetical Gulf union, such a widely accepted view should not obscure the fact that the price to pay for the perpetuation of this foreign policy has been an unquestioned political and economic dependence towards London and Washington.

Listen to the podcast|


Social Movements and Popular Mobilisation in the MENA Research Theme

Will the Real Palestinian Peasantry Please Sit Down? Towards a New History of British Rule in Palestine, 1917-1936|

In this seminar, Dr Charles Anderson discusses his paper which is part of a broader argument for a history from below of Arab society under the Palestine Mandate.  By reexamining the political economy of the countryside under the first 18 years of British rule and the responses of peasants and ex-peasants to the escalating pressures they faced, it contends that greater attention to the history of the rural majority has much to teach us. 

Listen to the podcast|


LSE Middle East Centre and Kuwait Programme Public Event

The Macroeconomics of the Gulf|

Raphael Espinoza of the IMF analyses the challenges created by the changes the economies of the Gulf states have gone through in the last decade, spurred by high oil prices and ambitious diversification plans.

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