Policy Alternatives

Policy Alternatives are monthly analysis and insights from engaged Arab scholars or activists dealing with all key reform issues in the social, economic, political and legal domains. 

July 2014
by Hana Jaber

The Syrian conflict has brought new threats, new refugees and a new wave of political uncertainty to a country already struggling to manage the political upheaval of the Arab Spring. Set against the backdrop of shifting domestic and regional politics, this paper breaks down the impact of the Syrian conflict on Jordan.

July 2014
by Ilina Angelova

This insightful paper illustrates the evolution of civilian administration initiatives in rebel-held Syria and their effects on the resilience of the population in towns targeted by chemical attacks.

July 2014
by Ahmed Abd Rabou

This paper by Ahmed Abd Rabou shows how Egypt's June 2014 legislative election law endangers the functioning of Egypt’s political parties and parliament. Rabou outlines an alternative electoral system that would protect political space for political parties and the parliament while maintaining constitutional benefits for women, Christians and other groups.

July 2014
by Nacer Djabi

Abdelaziz Bouteflika, despite ill health and the belief of many Algerians that the 2014 elections would be an opportunity for change, used his carefully crafted connections in state institutions, private business, the media, and across the political landscape to win support for his fourth term as president of Algeria.

July 2014
by Hamadi Redissi

Tunisia’s National Dialogue quickly became an essential institution for resolving differences, notably with respect to the constitution, but is there still a role for the Dialogue?

June 2014
by Félix Legrand

Understanding the nature of ISIS’s integration into the Syrian political and social fabric is essential for the development of a realistic and efficient strategy to curb the expansion and the consolidation of the jihadist state currently under construction in Iraq and Syria.

May 2014
by Manon-Nour Tannous

Based on an analysis of reconstruction efforts around the world, this paper by Manon-Nour Tannous lays out important recommendations for eventual post-conflict reconstruction in Syria. Successful reconstruction will help consolidate the new regime and thus increase the chances of achieving stability in the future.

March 2014
by Rana Yazigi

For Syrians, culture is the recipient into which are poured all the political, military, human and social developments experienced over the past three years. This paper is the beginning of a search for consensus on the role of culture in the deep and complex currents of change that the Syrian people are experiencing today.

February, 2014
by Bassma Kodmani, Félix Legrand

That the first round of talks in Geneva in the last week of January achieved nothing as Mr Brahimi admitted, is not a surprise. But is there a strategy? For there to be one, it must connect the political negotiations to action on the ground.

October 2013
by Fouad Mohammad Fouad

The crisis that has overwhelmed Syria since 2011 has not only led to millions of Syrians fleeing to neighboring states or being displaced within Syria but has also caused many direct health problems, including the resurfacing of childhood diseases such as polio. In such a crisis situation, the articulation of an appropriate health policy is essential. While a great number of studies have focused on the security and political dimensions of the conflict, few consider the population’s healthcare. This paper outlines ideas for a renewed focus, even during this time of crisis, on the preparation of health policies that respond to Syria’s current challenges and to its future needs.