The Dynamics of Power in the Middle East Program (Middle East Program) aims at developing a body of transdisciplinary and field-based expertise to address questions of changes and dynamics of power in the Middle East region. Considering the growing demand for accurate information, foresight analysis, and the colossal amount of inconsistent data available to the public, we put pride into promoting in-depth knowledge with original approaches that abide by the most rigorous criteria of scientific research. The first characteristic of our researchers lies in years of direct contact with the societies and the territories they study. Three research focuses are at the foundation of its scientific identity: the current reconfigurations of authoritarian practices, armed conflicts, and human migration.


Publishing research on current socio-political issues in the Middle East and North Africa, described in a clear and accessible style and respecting the three principles of intellectual independence, scientific rigor and linguistic and field expertise


In order to promote in-depth discussions between academics, experts and decision-makers working in the MENA region we gather international specialists and researchers around an issue pertaining to our areas of research.


Conducted by our researchers, Middle East Talks are monthly interviews with local researchers or experts that aim at shedding light on undebated issues and offering an informed perspective to the public debate.

If you would like to join this network, please send your contact details and main research topics by email.


Although the 2011 historic sequence has made it clear that authoritarianism can be contested and shaken, it remains a constant component of political life in contemporary Middle Eastern and North African countries. Our program seeks to account for the many current reformulations the region is undergoing. In order to renew a long tradition of the comparative study of political regimes, Noria takes a comprehensive multi-scale approach to authoritarian dynamics by exploring state and institutional practices and analyzing its dovetail with the social arena.

The dramatic development of armed conflicts in the Middle East and North Africa calls for social scientists to adopt new methodological and conceptual approaches to understanding these extreme situations. Combining micro and macro analyses, our program carefully studies the re-formulation of political orders across the region. Beyond the political life that remains at the core of our expertise, we also pay special interest to the profound changes that affect social, economical, and cultural practices. Finally, we explore the attempts to challenge monopolies of the state and their resulting rival institutions and new rationalities that often privilege sectarian and ethnic normative orders.

From 2011 hitherto, revolutionary movements, civil wars, or sovereignty disputes provoked by non-state armed groups gave rise to a massive displacement of populations. We aim at unfolding the diversity of migratory flows, to further our grasp on refugees’ experience and the relevance of policies implemented by domestic or international organizations, in response to their forced migrations. This focus enables further investigations that will tackle the demographic, political, and social transformations at work in host countries (Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq, Jordan, Egypt, etc.). Finally, the magnitude of the refugee crisis in the region requires focusing on local context of integration, an angle that will also put into question the new regional order.


The Political Stakes of the Battle for Mosul

Shia fighter in the city of Mosul, November 2016 - © Patrick Chauvel The battle for Mosul is the final episode of the recapture of Iraq. It is the last act of a divided political and military landscape on the verge of new struggles. The absence of any agreements...

Iraq: two Years after the Fall of Mosul

  Introduction Chapter 1: The Militias and the State in Iraq Map 1: Competing Actors, Fragmented Territories: Iraq and Syria, June 2016 Chapter 2: After the Islamic State: the Case of Touzkhurmatu Map 2: Actors and Territories in the Iraqi conflict, June 2016...

L’après État islamique: le cas de Tuz Khurmatu

Iraq From the Ground - Chapitre 2 Pour revenir au dossier complet en anglais, cliquez ici. Suite aux revers militaires essuyés par l’État islamique (EI), la logique d’un front commun entre forces kurdes et forces turkmènes chiites pro-Bagdad qui le combattent...

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Past events

June 7, 2016: First MENA Annual Conference

Two years after the conquest of Mosul by ISIS, the conference will explore the dynamics of the second Iraqi civil war. In partnership with Amnesty International (, this event will bring together researchers with a strong background in fieldwork, to aim at unfolding the social and political dynamics of a conflict too often analyzed from a military standpoint.

Venue: La Belleviloise, 19-21 Rue Boyer, 75020 Paris

 Download the program


Robin Beaumont


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Arthur Quesnay


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Yohanan Benhaïm

Research Fellow

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Clément Deshayes

Research Fellow

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Xavier Guignard

Research Fellow

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Maaï Youssef

Research Fellow

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