7 Items

Tunisian designated Prime Minister Hichem Mechichi, right, delivers his speech at the parliament before a confidence vote in Tunis, Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2020.

(AP Photo/Riadh Dridi)

Journal Article - Comparative Political Studies

Who Supports Gender Quotas in Transitioning and Authoritarian States in the Middle East and North Africa?

| Mar. 12, 2024

What are the drivers of citizens’ support for electoral gender quotas in transitioning and authoritarian states? Despite extensive research examining public support for women in politics in democracies, we know little about how the public perceives them in less democratic settings. To address this shortcoming, we use original survey data from authoritarian Morocco and transitioning Tunisia – two Arab countries hailed for their progressive gender policies. We argue that in these countries where citizens lack political information, they instead rely on their assessment of the government’s performance to form attitudes toward gender quotas. Furthermore, electoral legitimacy plays an important role in shaping citizens’ support for quotas, which are closely linked to how elections and legislatures operate. The findings offer strong support for our theoretical expectations and uncover important gender differences.

Amman, March 2020

AP Photo/Raad Adayleh


Economic and Social Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic on the Middle East and North Africa

| December 2022

Between October 2020 and May 2021, the Middle East Initiative conducted a series of nationally representative surveys to measure the economic, social, and public health impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.1 Designed and supervised by Tarek Masoud, Faculty Director of the Middle East Initiative, and Yuree Noh, Research Fellow, the surveys collected responses from 8,500 residents of seven countries in the region—Algeria, Egypt, Kuwait, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, and the United Arab Emirates. Our goal is to provide the data and insights needed to develop effective policy responses to current and future public health crises.

This report summarizes our findings on how COVID-19 has disrupted employment, mental health, food security, education, and childcare in the region during its first year. We also show that the consequences of the pandemic were felt most acutely by some of the region’s most vulnerable populations: the poor, women, youth, and children.

Students carry banners and chant slogans during a demonstration in Algiers, Algeria, Tuesday, April 16, 2019.

(Anis Belghoul/AP Photo)

Analysis & Opinions - WBEZ 91.5 Chicago

After 20 Years With A Single President, Algeria Looks For A New Leader

| Apr. 17, 2019

After months of mass anti-government protests, Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika stepped down in early April after 20 years of rule. Protesters sought to take down a political system they said was corrupt, concentrating power in the hands of a few military, intelligence and business leaders. The tipping point came when Bouteflika, 82, announced he would run for a fifth term in office; protesters responded with slogans including “leave means leave” and “no fifth term.”


Report - Project on Middle East Political Science

POMEPS Studies 31: Social Policy in the Middle East and North Africa

This spring, major protests swept through Jordan over economic grievances and subsidy reforms. In July, protestors took to the streets in the south of Iraq, demanding that the government address persistent unemployment, underdevelopment, and corruption. Meanwhile, earlier in 2018, Tunisians launched a wave of protests to oppose tax hikes on basic goods and increased cost of living. Such highly politicized responses to social policy concerns are the norm rather than the exception across the Middle East and North Africa.

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Report Chapter

Politics and education in post-war Algeria

| October 2018

The 1990s in Algeria were tumultuous. Economic crisis drove widespread protests in the late 1980s, which were followed by democratic political reforms, the victory of the Front Islamique du Salut (FIS) in the 1991 legislative elections, a rapid political breakdown, and a long and bloody civil war. These events have since continued to shape political developments not only in Algeria, but also in the broader Middle East region. What remain to be clarified, though, are the longer-term consequences of this contentious period for economic and social welfare conditions in the country.