Dr. Mark Thompson, Assistant Professor of Middle East Studies, Department of General Studies launched his new book "Policy Making in the GCC: State, Citizens and Institutions" (IB Tauris, 2017) at Chatham House, the Royal Institute of International Affairs, in London on 5 September. The book co-edited with Dr. Neil Quilliam from Chatham House is based on a workshop directed by Dr. Thompson and Dr. Quilliam "Building an Institutional Process of Socio-Politics in the Gulf" convened at the 2015 Gulf Research Meeting, University of Cambridge, UK.
This edited volume with contributions from academics as well as practitioners analyzes the vital role that institutions are coming to play in shaping policy in the Gulf States. The emergence of a new generation of leaders in the Gulf, and the era of low oil prices, has given institutions new importance in the policy process. Along with demographic change, these developments have compelled state and citizen to re-evaluate the nature of the social contract that binds them together. This book shows how academic, social and economic institutions are responding to the increasingly complex process of decision-making. The book has been endorsed by Professor Tim Niblock, Emeritus Professor, Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies, University of Exeter: "This is an important book, covering a range of issues which are seldom given attention or analysis in other literature. Its concerns are central to how GCC governments engage with their populations. For those seeking to understand the dynamics of GCC governance, in all its diverse dimensions, this work should be required reading".
The book launch including a presentation by Dr. Thompson and a panel discussion of the book's central themes. This was followed by a lively question and answer session. The audience at this well-attended event comprised academics, policy-makers, media representatives and GCC students.