September 2020 Infrastructures and Power in the Middle East and North Africa
Laura Basagni Program Manager GMF – German Marshall Fund of the United States
Lotje Boswinkel Trainee EUISS – European Union Institute for Security Studies
Victor Salama Professor Faculty of Economics and Political Science, Cairo University

Abstract

Geopolitics is back. A more aggressive great power competition and the disruptive effects of new technologies have given new impetus to the analysis of the impact of geography on political decisions.

Over the last decade, the Mediterranean and the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region have experienced profound and far-reaching social, political and economic transformations that have contributed to unprecedented levels of volatility and uncertainty. Some of these shifts have reshaped many of the traditional features of the geopolitical order in place in the region for decades, while others might have the potential to do so in the near future.  Infrastructures is one of the areas where the effects of those global and regional dynamics are more visible and this is why a good grasp of the geopolitics of infrastructures can help us understand the broader geopolitical shifts in the Middle East and North Africa better.

This is the main goal of this Joint Policy Study that ultimately aims to fill a gap in the scholarly work on the Mediterranean and the MENA region by delving into issues of geopolitical competition, conflict and cooperation from the point of view of the use of strategic infrastructures.