Andrey Kortunov: The Future of the Middle East: Horizons of Challenges and Opportunities

The Future of the Middle East: Horizons of Challenges and Opportunities

In 2016-2019 an international consortium of think tanks and universities from Europe, the Middle East and North Africa carried out a large-scale research project “Middle East and North Africa Regional Architecture: Mapping Geopolitical Shifts, Regional Order and Domestic Transformations”. One of the final results of the project was the report “Imagining Future(s) for the Middle East and North Africa” as an attempt to outline possible scenarios for the development of events in the region in the short term, as well as in the long term.

Table of Contents Below the Fold

I. 2025 Horizon: Total Pessimism and Timid Hopes for a Miracle

1. Scarce Natural Resources: Water, Food and the Effects of Climate Change
2. Oil Still Matters – But Decarbonization Is Unstoppable
3. Social Contract Under Threat: Inequalities in the Forefront
4. Fragmented Societies: Polarization and Pluralization
5. Intrusive Authoritarianism: Control, Repression and Disinformation
6. A Militarized and Brutalized Region
7. Foreign Meddling and Rebalanced Global Ambitions

II. Scenarios for 2050: Megatrends and the Uncertainties

1. Unstoppable Climate Change
2. Post-Oil World
3. An Urbanized Region
4. Digitalization and Automation
5. Religiosity, Individualization and Citizenship
6. Strong or Fierce States
7. Managing the Effects of Today’s Conflicts
8. China: Primus Inter Pares
9. Game-Changing Africa
10. Europe and the MENA Region: A Family Issue

III. Afterword: What about Russia?