Spain, Barcelona

Geopolitics of the MENA Region in a Post-Western World

when 19 June 2019 - 21 June 2019
language English
duration 1 week
credits 1 EC
fee EUR 165

Which are the implications for the Middle East and North Africa of the relative decline of the West, Russia’s return, the rise of China and Africa’s potential? The purpose of this course is to help students understand the processes through which this region has been subject to exceptional influence and intervention by foreign powers. But it also aims at assessing which are the strategies of several countries in the region to take advantage of global geopolitical shifts. While the region was, in the early 2000s, one of the theatres where Washington projected its unilateral moment, it has now become one of the areas where the US perceived decline is more acute. In the post-2011 context Russia has manoeuvred to fill this vacuum. Is it sustainable? In a more subtle but gradual manner, China is also becoming a relevant actor. Mega-infrastructure projects but also some embryonic investment in the security domain (military base in Djibouti) suggest that this is a long-term investment. More broadly, relations between the MENA and Asia are growing and are multifaceted, including Iran’s economic links with major Asian economies or the presence of South-Asian diasporas in the Gulf. Are we witnessing an ‘Asianization’ process? Finally, Africa’s demographic and economic growth in the next decades will be a global game-changer but the effects will be felt more strongly in the MENA because of geographic proximity. While many may look to Africa as a source of threats, countries in the MENA tend to perceive it as geopolitical opportunity. By analysing at these trends and assessing the role and strategies of different MENA countries, this course will provide students with an innovate approach on the region’s embeddedness in global trends and will invite them to “de-westernise” their reading of the MENA’s position in global affairs.

Course leader

Eduard Soler (CIDOB-IBEI)

Target group

The IBEI Summer School in Global Politics, Development and Security is a program designed for graduate students and all those who have an interest in advanced knowledge of international security, international development and global politics issues. The objective is to offer different short courses on significant topics, taught by scholars and experts of international prestige. The School will enable participants to broadly discuss - in and out the classroom - current developments in world politics in the light of core social-science and IR theories and perspectives. A social program for networking will be also available to participants. Optionally, students may ask for an assessment in order to be able to obtain ECTS credits, provided they are recognized by their university.

Course aim

Which are the implications for the Middle East and North Africa of the relative decline of the West, Russia’s return, the rise of China and Africa’s potential? The purpose of this course is to help students understand the processes through which this region has been subject to exceptional influence and intervention by foreign powers. But it also aims at assessing which are the strategies of several countries in the region to take advantage of global geopolitical shifts. While the region was, in the early 2000s, one of the theatres where Washington projected its unilateral moment, it has now become one of the areas where the US perceived decline is more acute. In the post-2011 context Russia has manoeuvred to fill this vacuum. Is it sustainable? In a more subtle but gradual manner, China is also becoming a relevant actor. Mega-infrastructure projects but also some embryonic investment in the security domain (military base in Djibouti) suggest that this is a long-term investment. More broadly, relations between the MENA and Asia are growing and are multifaceted, including Iran’s economic links with major Asian economies or the presence of South-Asian diasporas in the Gulf. Are we witnessing an ‘Asianization’ process? Finally, Africa’s demographic and economic growth in the next decades will be a global game-changer but the effects will be felt more strongly in the MENA because of geographic proximity. While many may look to Africa as a source of threats, countries in the MENA tend to perceive it as geopolitical opportunity. By analysing at these trends and assessing the role and strategies of different MENA countries, this course will provide students with an innovate approach on the region’s embeddedness in global trends and will invite them to “de-westernise” their reading of the MENA’s position in global affairs.

Credits info

1 EC
Participants have the opportunity to gain ECTS credits if they are recognized by their universities.

6 hour course: 1 credit = Complete the course + daily assignments / project work

Fee info

EUR 165: Fee for Students. Discount pricing for participants taking more than one course (2 courses 20%; 3 courses 30%; 4 courses 40%).
Early bird discount: an additional 10% discount for full payments received on or before 10 June 2019
EUR 250: Fee for Professionals/Researchers. Discount pricing for participants taking more than one course (2 courses 20%; 3 courses 30%; 4 courses 40%).
Early bird discount: an additional 10% discount for full payments received on or before 10 June 2019

Scholarships

A number of scholarships to cover full or half course fees will be available. In addition to the application requirements, to apply for a scholarship, interested persons must send to IBEI until 13th May 2019, a letter of interest and a recommendation lett