Tandem Projects

Photo by: Magdalena Pulz

Conference Panel "Parliaments in the Middle East and North Africa"

The panel on "Parliaments in the Middle East and North Africa: A Struggle for Relevance" at the Conference of the “ECPR Standing Group on Parliaments” focused on elected representative institutions in the Arab world. The results will be published in a special issue on Arab Parliaments.


In the framework of their tandem project, AGYA members Florian Kohstall and Jan Völkel contributed enormously to the thematic richness of the 3rd General Conference of the European Consortium for Political Research (ECPR) Standing Group on Parliaments", held in Munich from 30 June to 2 July 2016. The conference was entitled "Parliaments in Challenging Times". However, presentations about Arab parliaments were largely underrepresented. Only initial research on Arab parliaments has been conducted so far. Articles on different sub-aspects of Arab legislative politics have been published, but they lack a common analytical framework and theoretic fundament. The two AGYA members aimed to adress this research gap in the framework of their tandem project. Therefore, they contributed the panel “Parliaments in the Middle East and North Africa: A Struggle for Relevance” to the well visited conference. Panel speakers included Prof. Larbi Sadiki (Qatar University), Dr. Ahmed Abd Rabou (Cairo University/University of Denver), Dr. Ebrahim Afsah (University of Copenhagen) and Paul Esber (University of Sydney, currently based in Amman).


The invited experts discussed various aspects of Arab legislative politics: theoretical and analytical frameworks as well as parliamentary achievements in Egypt, Jordan and Tunisia. Additionally the panel also shed light on international parliamentary cooperation in the Mediterranean region. The outcome of the tandem project is the establishment of an Arab-German network of researchers that focus on the development of civil institutions (here: parliaments) in the Arab world and in Germany. The panel contributions will be published as a special issue on Arab parliaments.

Date and venue of the project

30 June to 2 July 2016


Photo by AGYA

Members in Charge


Florian Kohstall

is a political scientist. He is the head of the Cairo Office of Freie Universität Berlin. Since October 2015 he also coordinates the program Welcome@ FUBerlin, which facilitates access to the university for students who had to flee their home countries.

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Jan Völkel

is Marie Sklodowska Curie Research Fellow at the Institute for European Studies, Vrije Universiteit Brussel.

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