Farah Al Shami

Program Director - Social Protection
Arab Reform Initiative Team

Farah Al Shami is a policy and development economist. She is currently a Senior Fellow at the Arab Reform Initiative (ARI), leading ARI’s social protection program. She has more than eight years of experience, working with CSOs, academic institutes, and UN entities on advancing public policy reforms in the Arab region from a human rights-based perspective.

Her areas of expertise include conducting, managing and editing research, coordinating advocacy efforts at national, regional and international platforms, facilitating professional consortia/communities, and leading capacity-building programs.

Her research spans the disciplines of economic development, political economy and political sociology. It covers topics like social policy, tax justice, informality, inequality, gender justice, international financial institutions, youth trajectories (for livelihoods, political participation, civic engagement, and peacebuilding) in conflict settings, public-private partnerships, the 2030 development agenda, transnational social movements, and governance and civil society.

Prior to working at ARI, Ms. Al Shami was a Program Officer and Researcher at the Arab NGO Network for Development (ANND), the United Nations-Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (UN-ESCWA), and the Asfari Institute for Civil Society and Citizenship at the American University of Beirut (AUB).

She is Fulbright alumna, holding a Master’s degree in Policy Economics and Economic Development from Williams College (MA-USA). She also holds a Master’s Degree in Economics from AUB and a Bachelor of Science in Economics from the Lebanese American University (LAU).


Recent Social Security Reforms and New Pension System in Lebanon:  Interview with ILO’s Rania Eghnatios and Luca Pellerano
12 April 2024
#Elderly#Lebanon#Pension#Social Protection
“The Road to Marrakech” Ended on a Rolling Hill:  What About the Spring Meetings and Beyond? — Farah Al Shami
11 April 2024
#Financing for Development#IMF#Social Protection#World Bank
Arab Region Social Protection Systems:  Research and Policy Design Challenges — Farah Al Shami
20 October 2023
#knowledge production#Public Policy#Social Protection
Navigating Turbulent Waters:  The Compounding Effects of a Pandemic and a War on the Mediterranean Basin — Farah Al Shami
Bawader / Commentary
9 August 2023
#COVID-19#Mediterranean#Ukraine war
From Tangential Livelihood Programming to Integrated Social Protection: Conceiving a Long-Term Approach to Youth Economic and Social Policy in Iraq
From Tangential Livelihood Programming to Integrated Social Protection:  Conceiving a Long-Term Approach to Youth Economic and Social Policy in Iraq — Farah Al Shami
28 July 2023
#Iraq#Social Protection#Youth
IFIs and Social Protection:  Gender Equality in Limbo — Farah Al Shami
28 July 2023
#Gender#IFIs#Inequality#Social Protection
The COVID-19 Crisis and Health Inequality:  A Reciprocal Magnification Effect in the Arab Region — Farah Al Shami
6 July 2023
#COVID-19#health inequality#Social Protection
Perceptions and Trajectories of Youth in Baghdad, Al-Basra, and Mosul after the 2014 Conflict with ISIS — Farah Al Shami
13 September 2022
Rethinking our understanding of vulnerability under the pandemic — Farah Al Shami
31 January 2022
#COVID-19#Social Protection#Vulnerability
The Mediterranean Region:  A Hotspot of Inequalities in the Aftermath of COVID-19 — Farah Al Shami
Bawader / Commentary
18 November 2021
The Trap of Pinning Hope on the IMF’s Special Drawing Rights (SDR) in Lebanon — Farah Al Shami
Bawader / Commentary
17 July 2021
#Economy#Inequality#Lebanon#Political Economy