May 2016, Edinburgh: Plenary Meeting

Edinburgh Conference 30th May - 1st of June 2016

Project Plenary

The ArabTrans research consortium held its third project plenary in Edinburgh, on 30 May 2016.

Academic Conference

After the Uprisings: Political, Economic, and Social Transformations in the Middle East and North Africa

31 May 2016, Edinburgh, co-hosted by the Centre for Security Research (CeSeR), University of Edinburgh

Since December 2010, the Arab World has been undergoing a historical process of rapid and deep change in its political and social structures. Papers analysing any aspect of these transformations from any relevant field are welcome. The remit of the workshop is to bring together different perspectives on the changes that have taken place in the Middle East post-Uprisings, from diverse theoretical and disciplinary traditions.

The ArabTransitions project, headed by the University of Aberdeen, is organising a one-day conference in May 2016 to be held in Edinburgh as the culmination of a three year international research project on political and social transformations in the Arab world. Funded within the FP7 program of the European Commission, the project uses survey-based research to explore comparatively the beliefs, values, and behaviour with respect to political and social transformations in seven Arab countries (Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Jordan, and Iraq).

The conference is open to academics, activists, trade unionists, practitioners, policy-makers, and NGOs who are engaged in research, advocacy, campaigns, and movements in the Arab world. Due to the inter- and trans-disciplinary nature of the project, contributions from a variety of academic disciplines, such as history, economics, political science, international relations, public policy, geography, philosophy, and sociology are highly encouraged.

Submissions covered – but not limited to – the following topics:

  • Key political, social, and economic transformations in the MENA region: major changes, their significance, and their implications for theoretical frameworks, analytical methods, as well as policy implications for stakeholders (governments. NGOs, IOs, etc.).
  • National and regional trends: homogeneities and heterogeneities among MENA countries (pathways of socio-economic and political transformation, possible future trajectories).
  • Roots of the Uprisings: long-term structural factors and short-term triggers behind the upheaval in the Arab world.
  • The generational gap: the role of youth and ICTs before, during, and after the Uprisings.
  • Religion and political culture: the way the Uprisings and subsequent events affected
  • Islamist movements and the relationship between politics and religion generally
  • Europe and the Arab Uprisings: impact of the recent turmoil upon the role of EU relations.

The Coordination team at the University of Aberdeen of the European Commission FP7 research project ArabTrans “Political and Social Transformations in Arab World” organised a series of plenary meetings and events in Edinburgh from the 30th of May until the 1st of June.

The events took place over three days. We began with a private meeting of the consortium and executive committee to plan the next stage of our project on the 30th of May. The second day was given over to an academic conference co-hosted by the Center for Security Research (CeSeR) at the University of Edinburgh, where members of our consortium presented their research to the scientific community. Moreover, this conference brought together different perspectives on the post-Uprisings changes that have taken place in the Middle East, from diverse theoretical and disciplinary traditions. Academics from over 20 countries, contributed to conference presenting their research on various topics on political, social, and economic transformations in the MENA region. Finally, on morning of the 1st of June, members of the advisory board presented their comments on our work and future plans. In the evening, we hosted a policy-maker meeting with members of the media, NGOs, Scottish Government ministers and members of the Scottish parliament at the UN House Scotland.

Dr Nicola Pratt delivering her keynote speech entitled “Gendered Paradoxes of Socio-political Transformations in the Arab World after 2011”

Edinburgh Conference 1

Dr Andrea Teti, Dr Valeria Talbot, Dr Kathryn Vincent and Prof Pamela Abbott presenting the Kef finding of the ArabTrans Survey.

Edinburgh Conference 2

Members of the Consortium at the plenary meeting on the 30th of May

Edinburgh Conference 3

Dr Andrea Teti, Scientific Leader of ArabTrans project delivers the closing remarks at “After the Uprisings” Academic Conference.

Edinburgh Conference 4

Conference audience engaging with the Q & A session of the keynote speech.

Edinburgh Conference 5

ArabTrans project posters displayed at the “After the Uprisings” Academic Conference.

Edinburgh Conference 6

Dr Andrea Teti introduces Prof Pamela Abbott’s presentation at the policy-makers events at the UN House Scotland.

Edinburgh Conference 7

Conference Programme

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