EUI - European University Institute

Mission and objectives

The European University Institute (EUI) was set up in 1972 by the six founding Member States of the European Communities to provide advanced academic training to doctoral researchers and to promote research at the highest level.

In 2016, the Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies (RSCAS) at the European University Institute (EUI) established the Middle East Directions (MEDirections) Programme. MEDirections is a continuation of the Mediterranean Programme, which positioned the EUI at the forefront of the Euro-Mediterranean research dialogue between 1999 and 2013. It has the ambition to become an international reference point for research on the Middle East and North Africa Region, studying socio-political, economic and religious trends and transformations.

MEDirections promotes multidisciplinary research based on fieldwork findings and collaboration with researchers from the region. Its pillars are: Analysis based on empirical research conducted in the field; A multi-disciplinary approach focused on studying key, intertwined dynamics; A medium to long-term perspective that aims to identify trends, as opposed to the short-term policy agendas that are characteristic of think-tanks and other non-academic institutes.

Its objectives are: To produce high-quality academic research on the Middle East region, that can be of use to policy-makers and practitioners; To create a forum for researchers within Europe and the Middle East to share analytical perspectives and broaden research networks, and to integrate these researchers into contemporary policy debates; To organise, co-ordinate and facilitate the EUI’s research output on the MENA region, and to develop synergies with other world-leading research centres located within the EUI.