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Building Pluralistic and Inclusive States Post-Arab Spring

Now in its seventh year, the political and social upheaval ignited by the Arab uprisings shows little sign of abating. U.S. and international policymakers continue to struggle with their response to the turmoil, including state collapse and the rise of radical jihadism in Syria, Iraq and Yemen; the fragmentation of political authority in Libya; faltering transitions in Egypt and Tunisia; and the longer-term economic and political challenges facing oil-rich Arab Gulf states.

Political, socio-religious and economic exclusion remain among the most
significant catalysts of instability. Grievances that initially triggered the uprisings remain unaddressed, youth are further disenchanted and marginalized, and minority voices remain unheard as Arab states face a rising tide of radicalism and severe economic crises.

The Issam Fares Institute, the Baker Institute Center for the Middle East and the Carnegie Corporation of New York hosted a two-day conference during which renowned Middle East and North Africa experts identified effective and sustainable policy options that foster more inclusive and pluralistic systems in the region.

Click here to view the full program for this event. 

To view the entire conference, please click below:

Day 1

Session 1

Session 2

Session 3

Session 4

Day 2

Session 1

Session 2

Session 3

Session 4

Featured Speakers

The Honorable Lakhdar Brahimi
Former U.N. Special Envoy to Syria, and former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Algeria

Khawla Mattar
Deputy Executive Secretary, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia

Tarek Mitri
Director, Issam Fares Institute for Public Policy and International Affairs, American University of Beirut

Panels — Day 1

Economic Inclusion in the Arab Gulf

Chair: Kristian Coates Ulrichsen
Panelists: Karen Young, Mohamed Evren Tok, Peter Salisbury, Alanoud Al-Sharekh

Pluralism and Inclusion in Lebanon

Chair: Nasser Yassin
Panelists: Tamirace Fakhoury, Sami Atallah, Gilbert Doumit, Khalil Gebara, Joseph Bahout

Socio-religious Inclusion

Chair: A.Kadir Yildirim
Panelists: Nathan Brown, Mirjam Künkler, Amel Boubekeur, Amr Hamzawy

Panels — Day 2

Conflict and Post-conflict Reconstruction in the Middle East

Chair: Khawla Mattar
Panelists: Anas El Gomati, Renad Mansour, Maha Yahya, Nadim Shehadi, Frances Brown

Political Inclusion

Chair: A.Kadir Yildirim
Panelists: Bozena Welborne, Abdeslam Maghraoui, Mazen Hassan, Imad Salamey

Student Panel

Chair: Makram Rabah


Leading experts produced the following publications as part of the two-year Baker Institute research project on pluralism and inclusion after the Arab uprisings. The project is generously supported by a grant from the Carnegie Corporation of New York. 


The PJD, Islam and Governance in Post-2011 Morocco
Edited by A.Kadir Yildirim, Baker Institute

The Party of Justice and Development’s Pragmatic Politics
Amina Drhimeur, Center for Applied Research in Partnership with the Orient (CARPO), Bonn, Germany

Party of Justice and Development: A Strategy of Differentiation
Beatriz Tomé-Alonso, University Loyola Andalucía, Seville, Spain

Working Under Constraints: The PJD in the Aftermath of the 2016 Elections
Driss Maghraoui,Al Akhawayn University, Ifrane, Morocco

The PJD: The Vanguard of Democracy in Morocco in the Age of Populism and Authoritarian Entrenchment?
Lise Storm, University of Exeter, United Kingdom

Action and Reaction: Royal Rhetoric Responds to the PJD
Sarah J. Feuer, The Washington Institute for Near East Policy


Building Pluralistic and Inclusive States Post-Arab Spring
Robert Barron, Baker Institute for Public Policy

Gulf Cooperation Council States

Inclusion in GCC States: Findings from an Expert Survey
Kristian Coates Ulrichsen, Baker Institute


Islam and Politics in Post-2011 Tunisia
Edited by A.Kadir Yildirim, Baker Institute

The Reconfiguration of Ennahdha’s Recruitment Strategy in Tunisia
Maryam Ben Salem, University of Sousse, Tunisia 

A Doomed Relationship: Ennahdha and Salafism
Sabrina Zouaghi, Laval University, Quebec 
Francesco Cavatorta, Laval University, Quebec

Where are Ennahdha's Competitors?
Sharan Grewal, Princeton University

Too Strategic for the Base: How the Nidaa-Ennahdha Alliance has Done More Harm Than Good
Sarah Yerkes, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace 

Check back in the coming months for additional country papers and briefs. 




Thu, Feb. 1 - Fri, Feb. 2, 2018
9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
(GMT+0300) Asia/Beirut


Issam Fares Institute for Public Policy and International Affairs
American University of Beirut