Qatar University (QU) has attracted some of the world’s experts in Gulf politics, history and sociology to headline its expanding Masters programme in Gulf Studies.
As the Gulf region rapidly develops and increasingly raises its profile internationally, so interest in studying it in situ – living and experiencing daily life – grows. Now in its second year, the interdisciplinary MA course at Qatar’s national university offers this unique experience as the only one of its kind in the Middle East – and one of just two in the world.
Covering the Gulf states, Iraq and Iran, students investigate politics, economics, history, literature, international relations, security, the energy industry, ecology and culture which can lead them to employment in a range of spheres, from media to peace and security and NGOs.
The wide appeal of the programme is reflected in the multinational cohort of its students – with intake expected to grow to around 20 students by the start of September 2013.
New faculty who will further enhance the profile of the two-year programme include Dr. Khaled S. Almezaini, a research Fellow at the University of Exeter’s Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies who is currently researching identity and regime survival in the Gulf countries, with particular reference to the UAE. He will teach international relations of the Gulf.
Visiting academics will include Prof. AbdulKhaleq Abdulla, a professor of political science at Emirates University. A frequent media commentator on current Arab and Gulf affairs, he holds a PhD in Political science from Georgetown University. He will teach a new module – Special Topics of the Gulf Moment – which examines the sociopolitical changes which have taken place in the region during and since the Arab Spring.
Dr Baqer Al Najjar, professor of Sociology at University of Bahrain who holds a PhD in Sociology from Durham University in the UK, has been a visiting professor at QU since 2011 and helped establish the Gulf Studies program. He will teach State and Society in the Gulf.
Dr Abdullah Baabood from Oman is the recently-appointed Director of the Gulf Studies programme at QU’s College of Arts & Sciences and former Director of the Gulf Research Centre at the University of Cambridge in the UK. He will teach the Political Economy of the Gulf in the Spring semester. He said: “It is a great coup for us to have attracted such renowned experts to teach at QU and we are delighted to welcome them onboard. The opportunity to work with these respected international figures in the heart of the Gulf will, I hope, be a great draw for students from across the world.”
This new faculty from the region is supported by other QU Gulf specialists including Dr Steven Wright, Mahjoob Zweiri, Abdou Ndoye and Moneera Alghadeer.