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In Egypt, the Coronavirus Poses a Political Threat

The pandemic has exposed the shortfalls of a government that has neglected the health sector for too long. n March 16, Egypt had 126 confirmed cases of the new coronavirus. By mid-April, that figure had reached 2,700. A week later, cases had grown by more than a third. While the outbreak is just beginning, Egypt’s fragile health care system is…

Can Protest Movements in the MENA Region Turn COVID-19 Into an Opportunity for Change?

COVID-19 has offered regimes in the region the opportunity to end popular protest. The squares of Algiers, Baghdad, and Beirut – all packed with protesters over the past few months – are now empty due to the pandemic, and political gatherings have also been suspended. In Algeria, Iraq and Lebanon, COVID-19 has achieved what snipers, pro-regime propaganda, and even the…

Dr. Amaney Jamal’s Election to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences

The American Academy of Arts & Sciences today announced Dr. Amaney Jamal’s election to the Academy. Dr. Jamal is elected amongst the Academy’s newest members of 276 artists, scholars, scientists, and leaders in the public, non-profit, and private sectors. The Arab Barometer’s team is immensely delighted that Dr. Jamal will be a member of the Academy and will be joining…

Recent killing in Lebanon sheds light on honor killings in the country

This week’s mass murder in the Lebanese area of Baakline is a reminder that honor killings, while less frequent in Lebanon compared to other Arab countries, are more commonplace in Lebanon than is typically thought. A man from the Harfouch family was detained today over the killing of 10 people including his wife, two brothers, and two Syrian children, a…

A crisis on top of a crisis; the fragility of Arab states

In chaos theory, the butterfly effect is the sensitive dependence on initial conditions in which a small change in one state of a deterministic nonlinear system can result in large differences in a later state. In his 2014 book “The Butterfly Defect”, Oxford Martin School Professor Ian Goldin warned against the increase in systemic risks as a result of globalization,…

Can Morocco Effectively Handle the COVID-19 Crisis?

In Morocco, the COVID-19 pandemic has increased public trust in government, but people still have doubts about the effectiveness of the healthcare system. According to a recent study conducted by the Moroccan Institute for Policy Analysis (MIPA), the majority of Moroccans surveyed are generally satisfied with the measures taken by the government to battle the coronavirus. However, the same survey…

Grappling with a crisis like no other: the fragility of Arab countries in the face of COVID-19

In his 2014 book “The Butterfly Defect”, Oxford Martin School Professor Ian Goldin warned against the increase in systemic risks as a result of globalization. He borrowed the widely used term “butterfly effect” from chaos theory, replacing ‘effect’ by ‘defect’ to highlight the risks associated with a highly connected and integrated world. In a dedicated chapter on the systemic risk…

PEER REVIEW: Arab Barometer

The Arab Barometer is a nonpartisan research network, hosted at Princeton University, which provides insight into the social, political, and economic attitudes and values of people across the Arab world. They have been conducting high quality and reliable public opinion surveys in the MENA region since 2006 and make the data publicly available (free of charge) on their website. The Arab Barometer is currently updating…

Could COVID-19 push Jordan to the edge?

… Heading into the unknown Despite the current positive reaction of the Jordanian people and their compliance with the restrictions aimed at saving lives, this momentary amity between the state and the people is unlikely to endure after the virus is contained. In the long run, the emerging economic challenges will likely result in further social unrest and greater popular…

Women in the Middle East North African region pushing back against patriarchy

The world celebrated International Women’s Day on Sunday March 8. But such symbolic days seem to have little effect on the actual status of women in the world, as a recent United Nations report notes. Despite strides towards greater gender equality, the world body notes there is not a single country that has achieved gender equality. Moreover, 90% of men…