Sustainable development and environmental policy in the Middle East and North Africa

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This article is featured in the ORIENT I 2020

The advanced sustainable development agenda that is taking place in the oil-rich Arab Gulf monarchies is frequently described as a mere ‘greenwash’. From this perspective, the article argues that some Gulf monarchs have strategically exploited the ‘green niche’ in order to foster their grip on power. As ‘adaptable autocrats’ they benefit from the global trend on sustainability and have managed to adjust their policy accordingly.

Katharina Nicolai works at the Erlangen Centre for Islam and Law in Europe and is a PhD candidate at the Chair of Middle East Politics and Society at the Friedrich-
Alexander-University of Erlangen-Nuremberg (Germany). She studied Political Science, Islamic Studies and Middle Eastern Studies in Heidelberg, Marburg, Erlangen (Germany), Leuven (Belgium), and Rabat (Morocco). Her research focusses on political systems of MENA, foreign policy and geopolitical trends in MENA, autocracy studies, and environmental sustainability.

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