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Arab center for research and policy studies - booklet


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Arab center for research and policy studies - booklet

  1. 1. Established in 2010, the Arab Center for Research and Policy Studies (ACRPS) is an Arab research institute with an interest inthe social sciences, applied social sciences, regional history, and geostrategic affairs. Applying the tools from the social sciencesand humanities, ACRPS analyzes the pressing issues facing the Arab world using an interdisciplinary and holistic methodology.The underlying premise of the ACRPS is the idea that the Arab region is bound by common interests, a shared Arab humanand national security, and the potential of a joint Arab economy. Seeking to play a proactive role in the region, the ACRPS goesbeyond scholarly research to critique regional and global policies that have an impact on Arab states, and propose alternativesto those policies where needed.Core to the Center’s belief is the need for reviewing the prevailing research methods and regional approaches in the field of thesocial sciences. To this end, the Center’s ambition is to devise a distinctly Arab concept of research that is driven by Arab needswhile still retaining a global perspective.The ACRPS Headquarters is based in Doha with a second office in Beirut, Lebanon.
  2. 2. The Arab Center for Research and Policy Studies isa research institution which produces scholarshipon the social sciences, the humanities and culturestudies and cultural studies. In all it does, the Centeris committed to meeting the highest academicstandards. Equally, the ACRPS concerns itself withthe entire Arab Homeland, and takes an interestin all of the Arab states. In the work which it does,the ACRPS keeps foremost the aim of furtheringthe development of those countries. The ACRPSis further committed to the study of the relationswhich the Arab world has with its surroundingenvironments, in both Asia and Africa, as well asAmerican, European and African policies whichimpact the Arabs.Our commitment to the applied social sciences doesnot pose a barrier to concern for theoretical aspectsof our work. The Center takes a critical, analyticalapproach to the theories which define the socialsciences and policy and, in particular, how suchtheories impact the academic discourse within theArab countries and abroad.The aims which inform our work are manifold.First is to nurture the relationship which existsbetween Arab academics and specialists fromacross the social sciences and humanities, andintellectuals more generally, and the wider Arabpublic. The Center’s work is intended to advancethe scholarship, in terms of methods and content,needed to formulate the optimal policies for Arabsocieties, and to help translate such policies intopractice. It also seeks to foster relations betweenvarious Arab research centers, and to create andstrengthen relationships between Arab and non-Arabresearch and policy institutions across the globe. Indoing this, the Center will ensure that the Arab voiceis present on the world stage.
  3. 3. Research ThemesWhile adopting an interdisciplinary approach, the ArabCenter for Research and Policy Studies publishes papersin a number of specialist disciplines, and carries out itsactivities through a set of dedicated teams. Alongside itsregular publications, the ACRPS also convenes a limitednumber of special events and publishes ad-hoc briefings,reports and policy papers.The fields in which the Center publishes its findings are asfollows:
  4. 4. SociologyTopics covered in this field are: social change andpopulation studies; education, health and mortality;gender discrimination and youth studies; identityissues; labor force and unemployment; poverty;migration and marginalization; social movementsand the role of civil society and non-governmentalorganizations; integrated social policies; socialintegration; international development policies; anddemographics.Politics and Public AdministrationSome of the most pressing topics on the ACRPSsresearch agenda include: the social and nationalsecurity of Arab states; the crisis in Iraq; the Arab-Israeli conflict; sectarian relations and tensions;identity politics; the relationship between Arabstates and political Islam; political, social, economicand security reform in the region; US foreign policyin the Middle East; Israeli politics and society; thepolitics of oil and energy; and the roles of Iran andTurkey in the region.MediaThe study of media includes the analysis of mediapolicies, with a focus on Arab media. Specifically,the Center examines the role played by the Arabmedia in the creation of public opinion. The Center’spublications also cover social media and role ofinformation technology.EconomicsTopics covered in this field include: the economy andeconomic policies of Arab countries; opportunitiesfor economic cooperation among Arab nations; theimpact of the World Bank and IMF policies on Arabcountries; globalization, prospects and economicmodels; local financial resources, private capitalflows, official development assistance, externaldebts, monetary, financial and trade systems;world trade and basic commodities; investment,technology, project development, and basic serviceinfrastructures.
  5. 5. Environment and Natural ResourcesMuch of the Center’s work is concerned with topicsin which there is a pressing need for Arab research,particularly in the field of food security, foodsovereignty, water, poverty and pollution, and theimpact of natural resource degradation on societies.EducationRegional education policies, including those of highereducation, are analyzed and evaluated by the ACRPSwith a special focus on challenges and opportunitiesfacing the advancement of education, teachingcurricula, and private education.Israeli StudiesThe Israeli Studies Unit provides the Arab public andArab researchers with information on Israeli societyand economy. The aim is to inform the formulationof Arab policies. In doing so, the Center assumes theexistence of joint Arab national security.Turkey and Iran UnitThe Center publishes research on the policies of bothIran and Turkey and their role in creating a regionaleconomy, and on possible policies and plans to dealwith these nations and their influence on the regionas a whole.
  6. 6. Programs and ProjectsArab Prize for the Social Sciencesand HumanitiesThe ACRPS created the Arab Prize for the SocialSciences and Humanities in order to nurture Arabscholars across the region and the world. Thisinitiative aims to promote innovative researchrelevant to the progress of Arab societies at a timeof vast transformations affecting Arab countriesin their path toward democracy, independence,and integration. A committee responsible for theprize selects the relevant research themes, andprize candidates are selected by a panel of refereesprior to ACRPS’s Annual Conference on the SocialSciences and Humanities.Up to eight winners are awarded the prize ineach of the two categories: social sciences andhumanities. Respectively, two prizes are awardedto established scholars with another two allocatedto young and aspiring researchers under the age of40. The prizes also include an award of USD 30,000for established researchers, and USD 25,000 foryounger researchers.
  7. 7. Title AuthorsThe epistemological,the ideological andsocial networks:Crossroads andConjecturesKamal AbdullatifThe Glorious TunisianRevolutionAzmi BisharaCivil Society Azmi BisharaA History ofHistoriographyWajih KawtharaniGaza: Stay Human Vittorio ArrigoniThe SectarianQuestion and theProblem of MinoritiesBurhan GhalyunTitle AuthorsThe Arabs and Iran: AHistorical and PoliticalReviewAn edited collection.Contributions comefrom a number of Arabscholars.On revolution andrevolutionary potentialOn Revolution andSusceptibility toRevolutionAzmi BisharaIs there a ‘Copticquestion’ in Egypt?Azmi Bishara
  8. 8. PeriodicalsThe Center publishes three academic periodicals:Umran, an interdisciplinary peer-reviewed quarterlyin the social sciences and humanities; Tabayyun,a quarterly journal focusing on philosophy, criticaltheory, and cultural studies; and Siyasat Arabia, abi-monthly specialist journal on issues affecting theregional geopolitical environment. In addition to beingwidely available in most Arab countries, electronicsubscriptions are available through the ACRPS’swebsite: interface available)UmranFirst published in 2012, and now available in most Arabcountries and online, Umran was inspired by the needto better define the role of the social sciences andhumanities at a time when the region is witnessingrapid transformations. The name for the periodicalwas borrowed from a phrase coined by Ibn Khaldunto connote something similar to “polis”. It placesitself among other scholarly journals in the socialsciences and humanities published in the Arab worldand worldwide. At the same time, Umran seeks toreinvigorate the tradition of publications that wentbeyond providing scholarly contents and helped shapeschools of thought. Editions of Umran are generallydevoted to one specific theme of interest related tothe social sciences and humanities in the Arab world.Academics and scholars wishing to contribute originalresearch in the disciplines covered by Umran areencouraged by ACRPS to submit their work. Details ofsubmission guidelines are on the ACRPS website.