Political Inclusion

Carnegie Project Working Group 1 — Political Inclusion

The Political Inclusion working group, led by A.Kadir Yildirim, investigates prospects for establishing pluralistic political systems in a number of the MENA region’s most influential states. The research from this group addresses topics such as the inclusion of marginalized voices in decision-making processes; the establishment of pluralistic systems in ethnically diverse settings; obstacles that hamper the development of inclusive systems, such as corruption and patronage; and the reformulation of state-society relations in the transitioning MENA region.

This working group is part of a two-year project that confronts the governance crisis in the Middle East and identifies effective and lasting policy interventions to foster more inclusive and pluralistic states in the region.


Group Members




A.Kadir Yildirim, Ph.D., Rice University's Baker Institute for Public Policy

Yildirim is a research scholar at the Baker Institute. His main research interests include democratization, politics and religion, political Islam and Turkish politics. His most recent book, "Muslim Democratic Parties in the Middle East: Economy and Politics of Islamist Moderation," analyzes the trajectories of Islamist parties in Egypt, Morocco and Turkey.


Mazen Hassan, Ph.D., Cairo University

Hassan is an assistant professor of comparative politics at Cairo University and a Carnegie Fellow at Harvard University's Ash Center. He specializes in party systems, electoral systems, new democracies and experimental political science. He has co-authored two books on the Egyptian political system in transition following the 2011 revolution.

Hassan’s research examines whether the experiment of substantially increased representation of women and Copts in the Egyptian parliament has led to significant changes in either the introduction of new topics or the discussion of traditional topics through content analysis of parliamentary scripts and interviews.


Valentine Moghadam, Ph.D., Northeastern University

Moghadam is the director of the International Affairs Program and the Middle East Studies Program at Northeastern University, where she is also a professor of sociology. Her areas of research include revolutions and social movements, transnational feminist networks, and gender, development and democratization in the MENA region.

Moghadam's research analyzes Tunisia’s democratic transition — its achievements thus far, its potential as a successful women-friendly democracy, and the challenges that it faces — drawing on new fieldwork to elicit information on women’s legislative priorities and their progress in electoral politics and political leadership.


Imad Salamey, Ph.D., Lebanese American University

Salamey is the director of the Institute for Social Justice and Conflict Resolution at the Lebanese American University in Beirut, Lebanon, where he is an associate professor of political science and international affairs. He is also the president of the Center for Arab Research and Development.

Salamey’s research aims to answer what constitutes a legitimate and viable state — given communal diversity — by exploring different means for integration and accommodation, such as constitutional revisions, electoral systems, and power-sharing. He presents different political inclusion propositions for multi-communitarian states including Syria, Libya, Yemen, Lebanon and Morocco.


Abdeslam Maghraoui, Ph.D., Duke University

Maghraoui is an associate professor of the practice of political science at Duke University. He is a core faculty member of Duke's Islamic Studies Center and Middle East Studies Center. His work focuses on the interaction between culture and politics in the context of Arab and Muslim-majority countries.

Maghraoui’s research assesses the effect of religious identity on tolerance in a Muslim context. It investigates individual attitudes toward the violation of social norms in a Muslim society by building on data from experimental surveys conducted in Morocco, Pakistan and Turkey, in an environment where collective norms are often non-negotiable.