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OCMO 2195 - The Political Economy of the Middle East and North Africa

Type d'enseignement : Lecture alone

Semester : Autumn 2017-2018

Number of hours : 66

Language of tuition : English

Voir les plans de cours et bibliographies


Experience in Middle Eastern studies and some basic economics are helpful to get started in the course. If you have no experience in these fields that's fine as long as you have a keen interest to engage with these topics and acquire related skills. If you have a comparative social science perspective with expertise elsewhere (let's say labor politics in Latin America) that can be helpful, too.

Course Description

The course deals with the political economy of countries in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). It outlines their major development challenges, such as long-term growth trends, demographic change, education, labor markets, oil dependence, water issues and food security. Political regime types, the military, civil society, political Islam and non-state actors are analyzed in detail. The shift from import substituting industrialization to structural adjustment and the proliferation of crony capitalism is used as a historic lens to analyze political contestation in the region. Gulf countries are dealt with in particular. Issues to be discussed range from economic diversification to petrodollar recycling and foreign policy stances. We will try to outline the empirical setting with the help of some analytical tools and identify major fault lines by discussing selected studies, articles and public resources. As textbook we use Cammett, Melani, Ishac Diwan, Alan Richards, and John Waterbury. "A Political Economy of the Middle East".


  • ATAY, Hazal (PhD student)
  • WOERTZ, Eckart (Senior Research Fellow)

Pedagogical format

The first half of each course is a lecture, the second half an interactive seminar with presentations by students.

Course validation

- regular attendance, active participation and thoughtful and timely completion of all the required readings before each class. - a summary essay of one week's readings (required and optional) of ca. 1000 words/ 3 pages with three take home points and three questions at the end you would like to raise in class (20% of grade). This essay will be due before the class in week 4. - A multiple choice quiz of 20 questions (week 6, 20% of grade). - a substantial final paper (3.000-4.000 words including references) on a topic to be defined in consultation with the instructor (60% of grade).

Required reading

  • Cammett, Melani, Ishac Diwan, Alan Richards, and John Waterbury. A Political Economy of the Middle East. Fourth ed. Boulder: Westview Press, 2015
  • Chang, Ha-Joon. Economics : The User's Guide, A Pelican Introduction. London: Penguin, 2014

Additional required reading

  • Beinin, Joel, and Frederic Vairel. Social Movements, Mobilization, and Contestation in the Middle East and North Africa, Stanford Studies in Middle Eastern and Islamic Societies and Cultures. Stanford, California: Stanford University Press, 2011
  • Henry, Clement M., and Robert Springborg. Globalization and the Politics of Development in the Middle East. 2nd ed, The Contemporary Middle East. Cambridge, UK ; New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010
  • Hertog, Steffen. Princes, Brokers, and Bureaucrats : Oil and the State in Saudi Arabia. Ithaca ; London: Cornell University Press, 2010
  • Woertz, Eckart. Oil for Food. The Global Food Crisis and the Middle East. Oxford ; New York: Oxford University Press, 2013
  • Sassoon, Joseph. Anatomy of Authoritarianism in the Arab Republics. Cambridge, UK: Camrbidge University Press, 2016

Plans de cours et bibliographies