About the center

The Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East examines the barriers preventing many people in the region from reaching their fullest potential. Our work also highlights success stories of individuals and institutions who overcame significant challenges in pursuit of social, economic, and political progress. Inspired by these examples, we delineate practical and implementable policy recommendations that policymakers in the United States, Europe, and the Middle East can implement to unleash the region’s economic and human potential.



We convene the most important stakeholders on issues of primary concern to the transatlantic community when it comes the Middle East and North Africa, from senior US and Middle East government officials to civil society activists and budding entrepreneurs.

Past events

Thu, Apr 29, 2021

From the courts to the streets: Iranian women changemakers on the struggle for equality

Online Event The Atlantic Council’s Future of Iran Initiative hosts a discussion surrounding the upcoming paper, Iranian Women in the Year 1400: The Struggle for Equal Rights Continues.

12:00pm Iran Middle East Resilience Resilience & Society

Mon, Mar 22, 2021

Iraqi diaspora mobilization and the future development of Iraq

Online Event A discussion surrounding the upcoming paper, Iraqi Diaspora Mobilization and the Future Development of Iraq, which explores Iraqi diaspora mobilization before and after the 2003 invasion and fall of the regime of Saddam Hussein.

10:00am Economy & Business Iraq Politics & Diplomacy Resilience & Society

Fri, Mar 12, 2021

A briefing on Yemen’s humanitarian crisis

Online Event Tim Lenderking, US Special Envoy for Yemen, and Sarah Charles, Assistant to the Administrator of USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance, discuss the US policy response to conflict and humanitarian crisis in Yemen.

9:15am Conflict Middle East Yemen

Looking for a paid summer internship?

We are now recruiting Young Global Professionals for Summer 2021!

Applications close Friday, March 26, 2021.


Thu, May 13, 2021

The escalation between Israel and Hamas: What’s new—and what’s not

While the intensity of the fighting appears to have caught some veteran practitioners of Middle East conflict and diplomacy by surprise, a trail of discernable factors led to this fraught outcome.

MENASource by Shalom Lipner

Israel Middle East

Mon, May 10, 2021

Want resiliency in MENA? Invest in women-led startups

As MENA assesses how to rebuild better after the pandemic, women-led startups could be part of the solution.

MENASource by Nadereh Chamlou

Economy & Business Middle East

Tue, Apr 27, 2021

Warrick in CBS News on domestic violent extremism

Forward Defense and Rafik Hariri Center and Middle East Programs Nonresident Senior Fellow Thomas S. Warrick was quoted in an article in CBS News titled "Homeland Security launches internal probe of domestic violent extremism."

In the News by Atlantic Council

Defense Policy Extremism

Mon, Apr 26, 2021

Warrick in the Washington Post on extremism within DHS

Forward Defense Nonresident Senior Fellow Thomas S. Warrick was quoted in an article in the Washington Post titled "Homeland Security launches review of violent extremism within agency."

Future of DHS by Atlantic Council

Defense Policy Extremism

Mon, Apr 26, 2021

Nusairat joins ISPI to discuss the royal rift in Jordan


Middle East Peacekeeping and Peacebuilding

Sat, Apr 24, 2021

Le Primavere arabe 10 anni dopo: dalle speranze alla disillusione


Italian Middle East

Wed, Apr 21, 2021

Khoury in the Arab Center: “Yemen’s Critical Moment”

In the News

Middle East Politics & Diplomacy

Sun, Apr 18, 2021

Ferziger and Sievers in Foreign Policy: “For Arab Israelis, the New Peace Treaties Spell Opportunity”

In the News

Israel Middle East

Mon, Apr 12, 2021

FAST THINKING: Did the Iran nuclear talks just blow up?

Iran’s ability to enrich uranium for potential use in nuclear weapons may have suffered a severe blow on Sunday after an explosion knocked out power at its Natanz nuclear site, while indirect talks continue in Vienna around reviving the 2015 Iran nuclear deal. Will the explosion blow up those negotiations? And what will its impact be on Iran itself and the country’s nuclear program?

Fast Thinking by Atlantic Council

Crisis Management Iran

Fri, Apr 9, 2021

Jordan was never ‘boring.’ A vibrant protest movement has been ignored for too long.

The greatest risk to Jordan’s stability remains that political and economic reform has been delayed for too long, and the little space that remains for Jordanians to express their legitimate frustration and dissent is narrowing every day.

MENASource by Tuqa Nusairat

Civil Society Coronavirus