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New Doha Institute to offer grad degrees in policy and social sciences



A new graduate studies institute focusing on Arab scholarship and regional research plans to open to students in Doha starting in September 2015.

The forthcoming school, the Doha Institute, plans to offer 10 graduate degrees, including eight in social sciences and humanities, and two in public policy and administration.

Created by the Doha-based Arab Center for Research and Policy Studies (ACRPS) and announced late last week, the Doha Institute plans to maintain an Arabic-language curriculum.

Behind the launch of the school is Azmi Bishara, a prolific commentator on Al Jazeera for Palestinian and pan-Arab affairs, former member of the Knesset (Israel’s parliament), and general director of the Arab Center for Research and Policy Studies.

In a message announcing the Doha Institute, Bishara explains its mission:

“The DI seeks to address the all-too-evident lack of interest in and support for social sciences, humanities, and public administration in Arab countries, and to enhance the formation of Arab research and an intellectual leadership in these fields.”

And although the primary language of instruction is Arabic, he adds:

There will also be a special place for outstanding foreign students with ability to study in Arabic alongside English and other languages and for distinguished foreign faculty members and researchers with track records of distinguished scholarship in the study of the affairs of our region.

The Social Sciences and Humanities degrees to be offered are: History, Philosophy, Sociology and Anthropology, Arabic Language and Linguistics, Economics and Development, Political Science and International Relations, Legal Studies, and Media Studies. Masters of Public Administration and Development Policy degrees will also be offered, and they say doctoral programs will be developed eventually.

Although no permanent Board of Trustees has been named yet, on the current interim board are Said Bensaid Alaoui, a prominent Moroccan academic, Abdullah bin Ali Al-Thani, president of Hamad Bin Khalifa University, Azmi Bishara, Ahmad Dallal – provost at the American University of Beirut, and Isam Naqib, a professor of nuclear physics.

The website for the project says groundbreaking on the new campus is “set for late 2013,” with an official opening in June 2015, and the first semester beginning on Sept. 15 of that year.

The campus is planned to span some 110,000 square meters, maintain QSAS green building standards, and integrate both student and faculty residences, as well as offer food and retail outlets, a fitness center, library, 450-seat auditorium, and new offices for the ACRPS. No details of its location have yet been announced.

Here’s are some renderings of the new campus, sent to us by the Doha Institute:


Editor’s note: Earlier renderings from the architect have been replaced with updated images from the Doha Institute.

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