The Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs is proud to host a Directors’ Lunch on “What Is Iran?” with Abbas Maleki, Senior Fellow with the Energy, Technology and Innovations Project, Belfer Center and Assistant Professor at the Sharif University of Technology.

Statistics show more than 35 % of US international news is on Iran, and more than 42% of news in this category includes at least one mention of Iran or Persia. Despite an enormous emphasis on Iran, it seems looking at Iran as a holistic phenomenon is rare. A new approach to analyze Iran is a necessity given the current emotional propaganda on the war against Iran or toward antiwar activities. Iran as a nation, Persian as a culture, Shi'ism as a religion, Islamic Revolution as a radical change in society and Islamic Republic as a government are different elements of the unique essence of Iran. This session tries to familiarize participants to the nature of Iran and partly Iran's behavior in recent nuclear crisis.

In addition to his current position at the Belfer Center, Dr. Malecki  serves as Director General of the Institute for Caspian Studies (IICS), Cultural Advisor to the Chancellor of Sharif University of Technology, and Member of the Board of Directors for the Islamic Culture Publishing Organisation. Previously, he has held a number of positions including: Director of the International Relations Research Department at the Centre for Strategic Research and Advisor to the President of the National Academy of Art; collaborator in the Task Force on the Caucasus in the Centre for European Policy Studies, (CEPS), Brussels; Advisor to the Chairman of Islamic Republic of Iran’s Broadcasting;  Director of the Department of Crude Oil Pricing, National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC), Director General of the Institute for Political and International Studies (IPIS) at the Iranian Foreign Ministry; and Advisor to the Iranian Minister for Culture and Islamic Guidance.

Dr. Malekki served as an Advisor to the Director of the World Bank (in Middle East and North African Affairs) and member of the Persian Language Development Council, Tehran. Additionally, he has been Editor-in-Chief for the Journal of Foreign Policy, The Iranian Journal of International Affairs, and Amu Darya: The Iranian journal of Central Asian Studies.

Dr. Maleki has published widely on matters of strategic thinking, economics, international relations, Iranian foreign policy and Iranian gas and oil policies.  He has also published and presented extensively, both in Iran and abroad, on the Caspian Sea and Region, Central Asia and the Caucasus as well as Islam and Iranian culture