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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...

Before the 2011 revolution that deposed Hosni Mubarak, Egypt had undergone a few reform periods between 1991 and 2007 in an effort to reduce external debt and expand the role of the private sector.

As a result of those reforms, Egypt was able to relax some price controls, tackle double-digit inflation, reduce subsidies and cut taxes.

The government also liberalized trade and reduced barriers to investment, resulting in a reduced public sector footprint in the heavy industries. This ultimately open...

This article originally appeared in The Washington Post on June 12, 2018. View it here.

“Bismillah-ir-Rahman-ir-Raheem,” the television announcer intoned as the soccer player with shaggy hair stood, poised for a penalty kick, with a minute to go in the match. The packed stadium near the Egyptian city of Alexandria hummed with nervous energy. Television sets flickered across the land, all eyes on this moment, this kick.

“Bismillah-ir-Rahman-ir-Raheem,” the announcer said again, invoking the words f...

POMEAS OP-ED, 20 March 2015

When the Obama administration's ground-breaking effort to carve out a nuclear deal was in its initial phases, the process carried the potential to lead the region towards a more secure and stable future. With pros and cons of the talks, there was a general awareness that any rapprochement should not be limited solely to a nuclear-focused deal between the U.S. and Iran and should address the broader regional security concerns, which would otherwise pave the way for a ne...

This is a repost from Al-Arabiya.

The people of Egypt had spoken. During eight days in September, Egyptians from all walks of life came together, united toward a common goal. Was it a political protest? No. A big soccer match? Not that either. A funeral for a fallen martyr? No. What brought so many Egyptians together? A bond sale.
 
The Egyptian government issued $8.5 billion in investment certificates for a planned expansion of the Suez Canal, a vital artery of world trade and a vital arter...

The Middle East is getting through a painful and chaotic phase of transformation. In yet another try towards normalization, the region once more has failed to succeed. An alternative order that could have oriented the regional order towards popular legitimacy, civic rights, rule of law and market economy seems to remain in waiting. To that end, Turkey’s unique role is again called for.

Turkey’s star was rising in the Middle East prior to the Arab Spring. This had to do first with the country’s ab...

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