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Recent Publications

Middle East Brief
Repartitioning the Sykes-Picot Middle East? Debunking Three Myths
David Siddhartha Patel

Middle East Brief
Why Are Egyptian Youth Burning Their University Diplomas? The Overeducation Crisis in Egypt
Nader Habibi and Fatma El-Hamidi

Middle East Brief
Repression and Protest in Saudi Arabia
Pascal Menoret

Middle East Brief
From Maliki to Abadi: The Challenge of Being Iraq’s Prime Minister
Harith Hasan Al-Qarawee

Middle East Brief
The Changing Face of Islamic Authority in the Middle East
Richard A. Nielsen

Middle East Brief
Egypt's 2015 Parliamentary Elections: A Prelude to Stability?
Abdel Monem Said Aly and Sobhy Essaila

Middle East Brief
The End of the "Abbas Decade": The Crumbling of the post-Intifada Status-Quo
Khalil Shikaki

Middle East Brief
Can the Vienna Agreement Solve Iran's Problems?
Seyedamir Hossein Mahdavi

Middle East Brief
Saving the Middle East
Abdel Monem Said Aly and Shai Feldman

Middle East Brief
The AKP and the Gülen: The End of a Historic Alliance
Sarah El-Kazaz

Middle East Brief
Libya’s Untold Story: Civil Society Amid Chaos
Jean-Louis Romanet Perroux

Middle East Brief
Jordan Facing Up to the ISIS Challenge: A Net Assessment

Asher Susser

Middle East Brief
How New Is Erdogan’s “New Turkey”?
Hikmet Kocamaner

Middle East Brief
A Passing Generation of Yemeni Politics
Asher Orkaby

Middle East Brief
Iran’s Overeducation Crisis: Causes and Ramifications
Nader Habibi

Middle East Brief
Can Hamas Moderate? Insights from Palestinian Politics during 2005-2011
Khalil Shikaki

Crown Center


Event
Saudi Arabia in a Chaotic Middle East
A talk with HRH Prince Turki Al-Faisal
November 22, 2016 | 4-6pm | Rapaporte Treasure Hall, Goldfarb Library
Missed the event? Listen to the full program.


Middle East Brief
Repartitioning the Sykes-Picot Middle East? Debunking Three Myths
David Siddhartha Patel, Research Fellow at the Crown Center and lecturer in Politics at Brandeis University

ISIS's territorial ambitions and the ongoing conflicts in Iraq and Syria have led to speculation among various analysts as to whether we are witnessing the end of Sykes-Picot and the emergence of newer and "less artificial" borders in the Middle East. ...Read More


In the News: October 13, 2016 - Intelligence and National Security Journal
The Good Spy: the Life and Death of Robert Ames [Book Review]
Jeffrey Karam, Visiting Research Scholar at the Crown Center, Brandeis University

The Good Spy: The Life and Death of Robert Ames by Kai Bird, Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer, is more than a riveting portrait of Robert Ames, one of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)’s most important clandestine o cers in the Middle East. In fact, Bird’s latest contribution is of great importance to scholars and practitioners... Read More


Event
Book Talk with Shadi Hamid, author of Islamic Exceptionalism: How the Struggle over Islam is Reshaping the World
October 13, 2016 | 12-2pm | Heller School, Room G01


In the news: October 3, 2016 - Project on Middle East Political Science (POMEPS)
State Formation in the Middle East: A Conversation with David Patel [Audio]
David Patel, Senior Research Fellow at the Crown Center, Brandeis University

In this week’s POMEPS conversation, Marc Lynch speaks with David Patel about the borders of the Middle East and the legacy of Sykes–Picot. “When Westerners talk about reimagining the borders of the Middle East, what they’re thinking of is smaller states.” ...More


In the news: October 3, 2016 - Brigham Young University
The Middle East's Crisis of Overeducation
Nader Habibi, Henry J. Leir Professor of the Economics of the Middle East at the Crown Center, Brandeis University

Assessing the social, economic, and political roots of unemployment among university graduates in the Middle East and looking at the overpopulation of university graduates in Egypt, Iran, and Turkey, large portions of university graduating classes throughout the region are unable to find suitable employment in their fields. This leads to growing dissatisfaction and contributes to long-term social and economic unrest in the region...Watch More.

Listen to a post-talk interview with BYU Radio.


In the news: September 29, 2016 - The National Interest
Shimon Peres: A Great Statesman, a Tragic Politician
Shai Feldman, Judith and Sidney Swartz Director of the Crown Center and Professor of Politics, Brandeis University

Shimon Peres, who died on Tuesday at the age of ninety-three, was a one-of-a-kind biological and historical phenomenon. After all, other than Peres, can we name a single person who played a major role in the creation of a new state and who some sixty-five years later held what is formally the highest office of the state he helped create—the state’s presidency? ...Read More


Annual Kick Off Event
Beyond ISIS: What Should the Next U.S. President Know about the Middle East?
Missed the event? Check out the audio of a panel of Crown Center researchers and faculty discussing the most pressing issues in the Middle East.


Middle East Brief
Why Are Egyptian Youth Burning Their University Diplomas? The Overeducation Crisis in Egypt
Nader Habibi, Henry J. Leir Professor of the Economics of the Middle East at the Crown Center, Brandeis University
Fatma El-Hamidi, Adjunct Professor of Economics, GSPIA University of Pittsburgh

On September 11, 2015, Egyptian university graduates set their PhD and MBA certificates on fire to protest their inability to find suitable jobs with these advanced degrees. Paradoxically, the day before Egyptian high school students and their parents gathered to demand an increase in the admissions capacity of public universities. ...Read More


In the news: August 22, 2016 - Times of Israel
Incentives Could Boost Slim Support for Two-State Deal, Poll Finds
Featuring Khalil Shikaki, Goldman Senior Fellow

Israelis and Palestinians are highly mistrustful of each other, but a small majority will support a final-status deal if it comes with the right incentives, according to a joint Israeli-Palestinian poll released on Monday. Palestinian pollster Khalil Shikaki argued his study showed the right incentive is a deal that would see both sides mutually benefiting from a regional peace involving the Arab world and Israel...Read More


Middle East Brief
Repression and Protest in Saudi Arabia
Pascal Menoret, Renée and Lester Crown Professor of Modern Middle East Studies at the Crown Center and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Anthropology at Brandeis University.

For decades, the Saudi monarchy has propagated the notion that they are the only rampart against Islamism inside the country. This idea has become axiomatic internationally, and many analyses of Saudi Arabia have solely focused on the salience of the royal family. In this Brief, Pascal Menoret challenges conventional understandings of Saudi politics and reveals a very different picture. ...Read More


In the news: June 30, 2016 - The Conversation
How will Turkey’s failed coup and massive purge affect its economic future?
Nader Habibi,  Henry J. Leir Professor of the Economics of the Middle East at the Crown Center.

The failed July 15 coup in Turkey has prompted a tsunami of responses by the government that is likely to have a lasting impact on all aspects of politics and society, including the economy. In this article, Nader Habibi analyzes the risks the failed coup poses for Turkey's economy. ...Read More


In the news: June 30, 2016 - The Conversation
Why Iran’s anti-American hardliners want to buy US-made Boeings for Iran Air
Nader Habibi,  Henry J. Leir Professor of the Economics of the Middle East at the Crown Center.

Under Rouhani’s leadership, Iran Air recently reached an agreement to purchase and lease airplanes from Boeing, an American corporation. President Obama’s sanctioning of negotiations between the two companies elicited scorn from America’s conservative politicians, but no noticeable ire from the Islamic Republic’s hardliners. In this article, Nader Habibi explains why Rouhani’s opponents remained silent on this issue, in spite of their opposition to developing economic ties with the U.S. ...Read More

Middle East Brief
From Maliki to Abadi: The Challenge of Being Iraq’s Prime Minister
Harith Hasan Al-Qarawee, Junior Research Fellow at the Crown Center where he is working on a book titled "Shiism and State in Iraq: Authority, Identity and Politics."

In this Brief, Harith Hasan Al-Qarawee reviews Abadi’s premiership thus far, examines the differences between Abadi’s and Maliki’s policies, and questions whether the transference of power from Maliki to Abadi has led to a significant change in Iraq’s political dynamics. ...Read More