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Department of Politics and International Studies (POLIS)



Before joining the Centre of Development Studies in 2007, Dr Abdelrahman worked as an Associate Professor of Sociology at the American University in Cairo. She has carried out consultancies for international development organisations such as UNICEF, OXFAM NOVIB and DANIDA. She is a member of the editorial boards of Cairo Papers in Social Science and Development and Change.


Dr Abdelrahman's research interests cover a wide range of aspects of the sociology and politics of development including state-civil society relations and social movements both at the global level and within the context of the Middle East. Her recent research focuses on critiquing the increasing role of behavioural psychology and AI in various fields of development including labour and refugees as well as in general debates on happiness and well-being.


Key publications: 

Egypt's Long Revolution: Protest Movements and Uprisings, London: Routledge (2016)

Civil Society Exposed: The Politics of NGOs in Egypt, London: I.B. Tauris, New York: St. Martins/Macmillan, Cairo: The American University in Cairo Press (2004)

'The Indefatigable Worker: From Factory Floor to Zoom Avatar'. Critical Sociology. February 2021. doi:10.1177/0896920521990739

'De-exoticizing Saudi Arabia with Madawi Al-Rasheed'. Development and Change 51(2): 583-598 (2019)

'In Praise of Organisation: Egypt between Activism and Revolution'. Development and Change 44(3), (2013)

A Hierarchy of Struggles? The 'Economic' and the 'Political' in Egypt's Revolution. Review of African Political Economy 39(13):614-628 (2012)

'NGOs and the Dynamics of the Egyptian Labour Market' Development in Practice 17(1) 78-84 (2007).

'The Nationalization of the Human Rights Debate in Egypt' Nations and Nationalism 13(2) 285-300 (2007).

Abdelrahman, M. et al., Cultural Dynamics in Contemporary Egypt Cairo Papers in Social Science 27(1/2) The American University in Cairo Press (2006)

Teaching and Supervisions


Dr Abdelrahman is the coordinator for the core paper on Sociology and Politics of Development (Paper 3) for the MPhil in Development Studies.  She supervises MPhil and PhD students in the Centre of Development Studies and the Department of Politics and International Relations (POLIS).

Dr Abdelrahman is not accepting graduate students for the academic year 2020-2021.

Professor of Development Studies and Middle East Politics
University Teaching Officer
Fellow, Darwin College
Dr Maha  Abdelrahman

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