Upcoming Event

Details

Date:
May 30
Time:
1:00 pm - 1:45 pm
Event Category:

Venue

Online

Organizer

Gulf International Forum

About the Book

The Middle East is experiencing the world’s most prominent youth bulge. Yet many MENA economies’ institutional designs, both formal and informal, favor the power of business elites, systematically discriminating against young people joining the workforce or opening businesses, and thus limiting their ability to contribute to innovation.

Large youth populations can be a boon or a curse: nurtured and integrated, they can jumpstart stratospheric growth; but if alienated and confined, they can drain a society politically and economically. The Gulf Cooperation Council countries are no exception to this perilous dilemma. This book explores the problem through a new concept, “creative insecurity”: a state’s subjection to an institutional ecosystem that is suppressing opportunities for innovation–to the extent that it is causing economic and political vulnerabilities, which in turn threaten national security.

Creative insecurity threatens the longevity of many states today. In this original, incisive study, Dania Thafer argues that GCC member-states should make it a national security imperative to cash in their demographic dividend, by averting the deleterious effects of ill-disposed elite politics. Investing in an innovation ecosystem that harnesses the talent of the youth majority will be crucial for the GCC’s successful transition to the post-oil era.

Featured Speakers: Dr. Dania Thafer and Dr. Kristian Coates Ulrichsen.

Speakers Bio:

Dr. Dania Thafer

Executive Director, Gulf International Forum

@Dr_DaniaThafer

Dr. Dania Thafer is the Executive Director of Gulf International Forum, an institute based in Washington, D.C. that provides analysis on political, economic, social, and security issues for the six Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, Iran, Iraq and Yemen. She is also a Professorial Lecturer at the School of Foreign Service’s Center for Contemporary Arab Studies at Georgetown University. Her expertise is on the Gulf region’s security, U.S.-Gulf relations, and the political economy of the GCC states.

Dr. Thafer has been widely published and consults regularly on matters concerning the GCC and the Middle East. Dr. Thafer has a new book titled “Creative Insecurity: Institutional Inertia and Youth Potential in the GCC” published by Oxford University Press and Hurst Co. (2023). Additionally, she has co-authored two edited books “The Arms Trade, Military Services and the Security Market in the Gulf States: Trends and Implications” and “The Dilemma of Security and Defense in the Gulf Region.” Her commentary has appeared in international media outlets, including:  The New York Times, Financial Times, BBC World, Washington Post, Forbes, Al Jazeera and others. Additionally, she is regularly consulted by governmental, non-governmental, corporations and research institutions globally.

Previously, she was responsible for building relationships with foreign dignitaries from the Middle East at the National Defense University’s Near East South Asia Center for Strategic Studies in Washington, DC. Dr. Thafer has a master’s degree in political science from New York University, and Ph.D. in Political Science, specialized in the Political Economy and International Relations from American University in Washington, DC.

Dr. Kristian Coates Ulrichsen

Baker Institute Fellow for the Middle East, Rice University; Non-Resident Senior Fellow, Gulf International Forum

@Dr_Ulrichsen

Kristian Coates Ulrichsen, Ph.D., is a Baker Institute fellow for the Middle East. Working across the disciplines of political science, international relations and international political economy, his research examines the changing position of Persian Gulf states in the global order, as well as the emergence of longer-term, nonmilitary challenges to regional security. Previously, he worked as a senior Gulf analyst at the Gulf Center for Strategic Studies between 2006 and 2008 and as co-director of the Kuwait Program on Development, Governance and Globalization in the Gulf States at the London School of Economics (LSE) from 2008 until 2013.

Details

Date:
May 30
Time:
1:00 pm - 1:45 pm
Event Category:

Venue

Online

Organizer

Gulf International Forum
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