The overarching question imparting urgency to this exploration is: Can U.S.-Russian contention in cyberspace cause the two nuclear superpowers to stumble into war? In considering this question we were constantly reminded of recent comments by a prominent U.S. arms control expert: At least as dangerous as the risk of an actual cyberattack, he observed, is cyber operations’ “blurring of the line between peace and war.” Or, as Nye wrote, “in the cyber realm, the difference between a weapon and a non-weapon may come down to a single line of code, or simply the intent of a computer program’s user.”
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Djavad Salehi-Isfahani is a faculty affiliate of the Middle East Initiative. Professor Salehi-Isfahani conducts research on the economics of the Middle East and is currently a professor of economics at Virginia Tech. His co-authored book, How Sanctions Work, from Stanford University Press will be published in February 2024.
His previous appointments include Assistant Professor of Economics at the University of Pennsylvania (1977-84), visiting faculty at the University of Oxford (1991-92), visiting Fellow at the Brookings Institution (2007-08), Research Fellow at the Belfer Center, Harvard Kennedy School (2009-2010), Kuwait Foundation Visiting Scholar at the Belfer Center's Middle East Initiative (MEI), Harvard Kennedy School (fall 2013), and joint MEI/Iran Project Visiting Scholar (2016-17). He has served on the Board of Trustees of the Economic Research Forum (2001-2006), a network of Middle East economists based in Cairo. He has been affiliated with the ERF as a Research Fellow since 1993 and currently serves as a member of its Advisory Committee. He is Associate Editor of the Economic Research Forum's biannual journal, Middle East Development Journal, which publishes rigorous policy research on the Middle East and North Africa. He has also served on the Board of the Middle East Economic Association.
His research has been in demographic economics, energy economics, and the economics of the Middle East. Dr. Salehi-Isfahani attended high school in Neishabour, Iran, and then, using a Central Bank scholarship, went to England in 1967 to study economics. He obtained his BSc (Econ) from the University of London in 1971 and Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard University in 1977.Last Updated: