Social and economic reforms were central to the demands of protesters during the 2011 Arab uprisings. And although certain regimes responded with moderate reforms, recent mobilization – from Lebanon’s YouStink group calling out government corruption and inefficiency to Egypt’s March 2017 demonstrations over cuts in bread subsidies to Morocco’s Hirak movement protesting high unemployment and limited development in the periphery – show how these issues are far from resolved. What motivates and limits governments to revise social policies in the Middle East and North Africa? How do international actors and processes of globalization and development, influence these policies? What historical legacies continue to influence social policy in the region?

The Project on Middle East Political Science is pleased to invite proposals for short papers to a thematic workshop on social policy in the MENA to be held at Harvard University on April 19-20, 2018.

Themes that may be explored include but are not limited to:

–       Youth politics and unemployment
–       Education policies
–       Health service provision
–       Islamist organizations and opposition actors
–       Subsidies, rentierism, and economic policy
–       Citizenship and services
–       Relationship between core and periphery
–       Gender and social networks
–       Development initiatives and foreign aid
–       Elections, accountability, and wasta
–       Regional impact of refugees and migration

Selected participants will be expected to circulate a short essay of approximately 2,000 words at least two weeks prior to the workshop. The workshop will discuss each paper intensively, and after revisions all papers will be published as an issue of the open access POMEPS Studies series. POMEPS will cover all travel expenses and offer a modest honorarium.

To submit a proposal, please send Lauren Baker (POMEPS.team@gmail.com):

–       a one paragraph description of the proposed paper and your CV in a single PDF

–       no later than Friday, September 1, 2017

–       using the subject line: Social policy workshop proposal [LAST NAME]

Participants should be at least a degree candidate (i.e. ABD – for those unfamiliar with the U.S. system, please note this means PhD candidates who have completed all coursework) or have a PhD in political science or a related discipline.

Call for Proposals: Workshop on Social Policy in MENA