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Centre for Geopolitics

Providing historically grounded approaches to enduring geopolitical problems

The Middle East has entered a phase of political chaos unprecedented since the collapse of the Ottoman Empire. Yemen, Libya, and Syria have turned into failed states, while Iraq and Lebanon face deep political crises. This has created profound misery for the general populace whose social grievances have escalated with widespread unemployment and outmoded developmental models. Shrinking fiscal base and rising public debt have limited the options of regional governments to restructure their economies. Geopolitical uncertainty will only make matters worse and force the region into greater instability.

Speaker's Bio

Dr John Sfakianakis, is Chief Economist and Head of Research, Gulf Research Center in Riyadh and a Visiting Scholar at Pembroke College, Cambridge University. He is also an associate fellow with the Middle East Program at Chatham House.

Previously he was Middle East Director of the Ashmore Group (FTSE 100 firm) in Riyadh. His other former positions have included chief investment strategist at MASIC, a Saudi family-owned investment company; chief economic adviser to the Saudi Ministry of Finance; group general manager and chief economist, Middle East North Africa region for Credit Agricole C.I.B.; chief economist, Saudi British Bank (SABB/HSBC); and chief regional economist, Samba Financial Group. He also has served as adviser at the Ministry of Economy and Planning in Saudi Arabia and as economist at the United Nations (UNDP) and the World Bank.

John has advised with public and private institutions in Europe, the US and the Gulf region, including BCG, PwC, McKinsey, KPMG, Berkley Research Group and Burohappold. He studied at the London School of Economics, University of London and Harvard. His doctorate was supervised by Roger Owen (Harvard) on the political economy of Egypt.

Book your ticket here:

Tuesday, 18 February, 2020 - 17:00 to 18:30
Contact name: 
Isabella Warren
Contact email: 
Event location: 
Bateman Auditorium Caius College, Cambridge