College of Humanities and Social Sciences
College of Humanities and Social Sciences

Bassam S. Haddad

Bassam S. Haddad

Bassam S. Haddad

Associate Professor

Political economy of development, violence and terrorism and US foreign policy, the triangular crisis area in the Middle East

Bassam Haddad is Director of the Middle East Studies Program and teaches in the School of Policy, Government, and International Affairs at George Mason University, and is Visiting Professor at Georgetown University.

He is the author of Business Networks in Syria: The Political Economy of Authoritarian Resilience (Stanford University Press, 2011). Bassam recently published “The Political Economy of Syria: Realities and Challenges,” in Middle East Policy and is currently editing a volume on Teaching the Middle East After the Arab Uprisings, a book manuscript on pedagogical and theoretical approaches.

Bassam serves as Founding Editor of the Arab Studies Journal a peer-reviewed research publication and is co-producer/director of the award-winning documentary film, About Baghdad, and director of a critically acclaimed film series on Arabs and Terrorism, based on extensive field research/interviews. More recently, he directed a film on Arab/Muslim immigrants in Europe, titled The "Other" Threat. Bassam also serves on the Editorial Committee of Middle East Report and is Co-Founder/Editor of Jadaliyya Ezine. He is currently a Visiting Scholar at Stanford's Program for Good Governance and Political Reform in the Arab World. Bassam is the Executive Director of the Arab Studies Institute, an umbrella for four organizations dealing with knowledge production on the Middle East.

Current Research

My research interests have both evolved and expanded considerably, but continue to center around three main areas: a) political economy of development (economic reform, authoritarianism, theories of the state, network analysis); b) violence, terrorism, and US foreign policy (before and during the advent of the “war on terror,”) and, of late, c) knowledge production and pedagogy. In various forms, I have tried to pursue this broad set of research interests to the extent possible, giving priority to my contribution to the dominant debates in political economy of development, an area which my first and third books address explicitly. My future research agenda will continue to evolve as I begin to conclude my focus on political economy of development, which is also the subject of my second single-authored book.

Selected Publications

Principal Co-Editor with Rosie Bsheer and Ziad Aburish, The Dawn of the Arab Uprisings: End of an Old Order? (London, Pluto Press, 2012) 
 Business Networks in Syria: The Political Economy of Authoritarian Resilience (Stanford University Press, 2012).

  “Syria, Authoritarian Rule, and the Uprising: A Political Science Perspective,” Arab Studies Journal,  Vol XXI, No. I [Forthcoming, Winter 2013].

“Syria’s State Bourgeoisie: An Organic Backbone for the Regime,” Middle East Critique, Vol. 21, Issue 3 (Fall 2012). 
“Syria, The Arab Uprisings, and The Political Economy of Authoritarian Resilience,” Interface Journal, Vol. 4 (1), 2012, pp. 113-130. 
“Syria’s Stalemate: The Limits of Regime Resilience,” Middle East Policy, Vol. XIX, No. 1, Spring 2012, pp. 85-95. 
“The Political Economy of Syria: Realities and Challenges,” Middle East Policy, Vol XVIII, No. 2, Summer 2011, pp. 46-61. 
“The Political Economy of Development in Syria, 1970-2010,” in Jens Hanssen and Amal Ghazal, eds. Handbook Of Contemporary Middle East History (Forthcoming, Oxford University Press). [peer-review testimony]
“Business Associations and the New Nexus of Power in Syria,” in Paul Aarts and Francesco Cavatorta, eds. Civil Society in Syria and Iran: Activism in Authoritarian Contexts (Forthcoming, Lynne Reiner). [peer-review testimony]
"Behind the Resilience of the Syrian Regime," David McMurray and Amanda Ufheil-Somers, eds., The 2011 Arab Uprisings (Forthcoming, Indiana University Press, 2012). [peer-review testimony]
“Enduring Legacies: The Politics of Private Sector Development in Syria,” in Demystifying Syria, ed Fred Lawson (London: SOAS-School of Oriental and African Studies, London Middle East Institute), pp. 29-55. [peer-review testimony]
“The Impact of Economic Networks on Economic and Fiscal Change in Syria: Institutional, Legal, and Social Basis of State-Business Networks,” in Networks of Privilege: The Politics of Economic Reform in the Middle East, ed Steven Heydemann (New York: Palgrave-St. Martin's Press, 2004), pp. 39-78. [peer-review testimony] 

Courses Taught

Introduction to Comparative Politics
Orientalism and Terrorism
Politics and Society of the Arab World
The Politics of Economic Reform in the Middle East
Authoritarianism and Reform in the Middle East
Seminar: Contentious Themes in Middle East Studies/Politics
Graduate Seminar: Orientalism and Terrorism