Ishac Diwan - Economic Research Forum (ERF)

Ishac Diwan

Research Fellows

Chair Arab World, Paris Sciences et Lettres, visiting researcher at the Paris School of Economics

Areas of Interest:

  • Political Economy of the Middle East
  • Development and Growth in Africa
  • Financial Flows and Trade – domestic and global issues


  • M.Sc. and PhD., Economics, University of California, Berkeley, 1979-1984.
  • B.Sc., Economics, University of Montreal, 1979. 


  • Chair Arab World, Paris Sciences et Lettres, visiting researcher at the Paris School of Economics, 2015 -present
  • Director for Africa and the Middle East, Center for International Development, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, Harvard University, 2011-2014
  • Country Director, Ethiopia and Sudan (2002-2007), Ghana, Burkina Faso, Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone, World Bank, 2007-2011
  • Manager Economic Policy for Poverty Reduction, World Bank Institute, 1996-2002

Latest Publications:

·       Middle East Economies in Transition. Editors, Ishac Diwan and Ahmad Galal. International Economic Association Series under the direction of Joseph Stiglitz. Palgrave, 2016.

·       A Political Economy of the Middle East, Melani Cammett, Ishac Diwan, Alan Richards, and John Waterbury. Fourth Edition, Westview Press, 2015

·       After The Arab Spring: Political and Economic Transformations in the Arab World.  Editor. World Scientific. 2014.

·       Crony Capitalism in Egypt. Journal of Globalization and Development (2015). With Hamouda Chekir

Working Papers

Debunking Myth: Economic Values in the Arab World Through the Prism of Opinion Polls

Using World Value Survey opinion poll data, we empirically characterize the economic values and norms ... read more

Working Papers

The Effect of Patriarchal Culture on Women’s Labor Force Participation

We show that measures of patriarchal culture are correlated with female labor force participation (FLFP) ... read more

Working Papers

Diaspora Networks as a Bridge between Civilizations

This paper explores the effect of international migration on the so-called clash of civilizations. Exploiting ... read more

Working Papers

Private Banking and Crony Capitalism in Egypt

In Egypt, the bulk of bank loans during 2003-2010 went to politically connected firms. At ... read more

Working Papers

Do Political Connections Reduce Job Creation? Evidence from Lebanon

Using firm-level census data, we determine how politically-connected firms (PCFs) reduce job creation in Lebanon. ... read more


Annual Conferences
Economic Develo...

The political upheavals which swept ERF’s region ... read more

Writing Effecti...

ERF organized a two-day workshop on writing ... read more

The Pulse of th...

Three years into the transition following the ... read more

Training Worksh...

ERF held a three-day training workshop, from May ... read more