Heavy hands and heavy hearts: the perils of military intervention in MENA

As U.S. influence across MENA has decreased in recent years, many regional actors have tried to fill the gap, increasing their military presence in the region. Russia has reemerged as a significant military player in the region while Turkey has heightened not only its military profile, but also its cultural and economic profile as well. At the same time, the…

Algeria’s Pulse: Two Years After “Hirak”

Two years have passed since the advent of the Algerian “Hirak” – the social protest movement that instigated far reaching and substantial political change, primary among them was the prevention of a fifth presidential term for Abdelaziz Bouteflika. In Arab Barometer’s first survey of Wave 6, a substantial majority of Algerians (82 percent) believe that corruption was prevalent in state…

Morocco’s Pulse: Ten years after February 20th

On this day in 2011, thousands of Moroccans took to the streets in dozens of cities to demand an end to corruption and authoritarianism, and to call for democracy and dignity. The movement, which was dubbed “the February 20th Movement”  — referring to the first day of protests —  is considered the largest protest movement in the history of modern…

Libya’s Pulse: Ten Years After the Revolution

Ten years after the Libyan revolution, Libya makes international headlines for its civil conflict and institutional breakdown. Still, according to Arab Barometer surveys, a majority of Libyans have consistently said democracy is preferable to any other system of government. In Arab Barometer’s second survey of Wave 6, this is what Libyans said about characteristics of democracy:  

On Conducting Surveys in the Time of Corona: An Interview With Michael Robbins

Elevating the voices of Arab citizens is at the forefront of what we do at Arab Barometer. And, during uncertain times, listening to the needs and concerns of ordinary people is extremely important. As such, Arab Barometer research network recently completed a unique survey that captures the sentiments of Arab publics amid the unprecedented times of the COVID-19 pandemic. However,…

Taking Arabs’ Pulse on Normalization of Ties with Israel

On December 10, Morocco became the most recent country to initiate the normalization of relations with the State of Israel, following examples of the UAE, Bahrain, and Sudan earlier in 2020.  These peace treaties have broken a long-standing impasse with Israel across the region and will change the direction of international relations within MENA. While governments are actively engaging Israel,…

Taking Lebanon’s Pulse after the Beirut Explosion

Background In the sixth and latest wave of Arab Barometer, we asked 1,000 Lebanese citizens questions related to the Beirut port explosion and Lebanon’s political system. These results suggest that Lebanon’s economic crisis and poverty remain the top concerns of Lebanese citizens rather than the effects of the blast. And, although Lebanese prefer a civil state in theory, they are…

U.S. & China’s competition extends to MENA

Globally, a new competition is taking place between the U.S. and China, which extends to the Middle East. China has taken an increasing role in the region, providing aid to governments for COVID-related relief, building on years of increased involvement in MENA through its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). As the Trump administration has changed the terms of U.S. engagement,…

Digital media usage during times of distress

COVID-19 has disrupted livelihoods and economies across the world, changing consumption patterns of all different types of products and services, including digital media. The Arab World is no exception, though perhaps the transformation in digital media consumption has been accelerated by the pandemic outbreak. The Arab world has witnessed a steady increase in both internet usage and social media penetration,…

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The Arab world in seven charts: Are Arabs turning their backs on religion?

The Arab world in seven charts: Are Arabs turning their backs on religion?

Arabs are increasingly saying they are no longer religious, according to the largest and most in-depth survey undertaken of the Middle East and North Africa. The finding is one of a number on how Arabs feel about a wide range of issues, from women’s rights and migration to security and sexuality. More than 25,000 people were interviewed for the survey…