Preparations are underway to convene the Third Annual Conference of Arab Research Centers December 6-8, 2014, in Doha, Qatar. This year’s conference is devoted to the topic “The GCC Countries: Politics and Economics in Light of Regional and Global Shifts and Changes”. The conference’s academic board has approved eighty one specialized research papers from a variety of disciplines across the social sciences, including political science and economics, and submitted in both Arabic and English.
The Arab Center for Research and Policy Studies chose to link the theme of this year’s conference to the states of the Gulf Cooperation Council in recognition of an evolving regional landscape. One of the changes resulting from these vast transformations has been the absence of hitherto pivotal states from the geopolitical realm: Syria, Iraq and Egypt. In tandem, the states of the GCC have stepped in with increasing roles across the entire region, a fact which will have profound consequences for the Arab Spring revolutions and the states which are witness to them. Equally, the states of the GCC face a number of grave challenges in the short-term future.
The accepted submissions reflect the thematic breadth set forth by the academic board in the conference background paper: Gulf geopolitics, regional and international shifts and changes, relations among the Gulf states and between Gulf states and international powers, the Gulf Cooperation Council states and the Arab regional order, the economic, social and political challenges confronting the Arab Gulf states, and efforts to achieve greater regional integration. The conference will present the research papers in two tracks, the first covering Gulf geopolitics and issues in international relations, and the second devoted to discussion of the challenges facing the Gulf Cooperation Council and social and economic issues in the Arab Gulf states.