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If the 2016 US Presidential Election was one of the most anticipated contests in nearly 243 years of America's existence, the election in 2020 is likely to eclipse that many times over.

Regardless of which side of the fence you sit, Donald J. Trump's presidency has upended everything that was known and expected of White House occupants over the past two centuries. It would be unfair to blame the, to put it mildly, unorthodox incumbent for the deep divisions in America. Such political, demographic...

It has only been a few days since the New Year fireworks lit up the skies of many of the world’s cities. For a brief moment, it was possible to forget the tumult and flurry of activity that marked the end of 2018, and focus on the festivities.


Unfortunately, not even the arrival of a new year is likely to aid any efforts to temper rising volatility, fractious diplomacy, political headwinds, tepid markets and, generally speaking, a world on the brink. Regardless of the causes of the alarming deve...

Although the embers have since cooled in one of the most hotly anticipated and closely watched midterm elections in the US, its striking results are likely to leave a profound impact on American politics for the foreseeable future. 

This year’s midterm elections made history by delivering some important firsts. Now there are more than 100 women who hold congressional seats, comprised of 79 Democrats and 29 Republicans. This was an important milestone given the fact that women, despite being rough...

Johns Hopkins SAIS Foreign Policy Institute is pleased to introduce "Four Minute Foreign Policy," a series dedicated to providing accessible expert analysis of pressing global developments and starting public conversations on ever-evolving circumstances.

This week, FPI Senior Fellow Hafed Al Ghwell discusses two key sets of economic partnerships: those between China and the Middle East and those between the United States and the Middle East.

What are the prospects for China's expanding economic en...

An unmistakable sense of despair and gloom accompanies most news reports and literature on the state of affairs in Libya after 2011. The Arab Spring was meant to usher in a period of unprecedented change after decades of notoriously undemocratic leadership across the Middle East and North Africa. Yet, seven years later, there has been very little positive development in terms of transparency, accountability, and inclusivity in the Arab world. No Arab Spring country, however, has fared worse than...

One of Tunisia’s many jobless graduates detonated a home-made suicide bomb in the capital last month. This was not a Daesh attack, it was a desperate and tragic act and an important reminder to politicians and government about what is at stake in this young democracy.

One of the most remarkable achievements of the ill-fated “Arab Spring” was the relative success Tunisia had in transforming its society despite extreme mistrust, heightened polarization and surging terror-related incidents. It was n...

Everywhere you look, the Arab world is changing — and fast.

A decade or two ago, most countries in the region had an unusual system in which citizens enjoyed relative stability, buoyed by exports of natural resources or foreign assistance. Despite limits to personal development and the chances to increase household income, this system worked fine as long as the public sector continued to dole out jobs alongside generous subsidies to maintain the myths of a low cost of living and prosperity.

Howeve...

Talk of the “next recession” is often dismissed as alarmist fear-mongering. The wounds of the 2008 financial crisis and the resulting downturn are still fresh despite positive results from a synchronized global recovery effort. In these politically charged times, economic pessimism is considered unfair criticism of the Global North’s flirtation with populism. Calls for caution and economic prudence are rarely taken seriously. However, no matter your political leanings or your particular school o...

A century ago, only 10 percent of us lived in cities. According to the UN, 55 percent of the world’s population now lives in urban areas, a figure projected to increase to 68 percent by 2050. What does that mean for cities in the Arab world, and political and economic life in the future?


In the past, discussions on urbanization were often peppered with negative images of grossly overpopulated cities, endless grids of steel, concrete and glass, polluted, crime-infested and claustrophobic. This hy...

Brain drains have existed as long as there has been economic disparity between geographic areas. More recently, they have been among the primary negative effects of the lopsided globalization that has long favored the developed world at the expense of developing economies. The brain-drain phenomenon occurs when skilled, educated people migrate to pursue better living standards and quality of life, higher wages, more personal freedom, access to the latest cutting-edge technologies and solutions,...

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The Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS)
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