photo: Nathan Brown

Nathan J. Brown

Professor of Political Science and International Affairs; Director, Institute for Middle East Studies
Suite 512
Address: Elliott School of International Affairs
1957 E Street, N.W.
Phone: 202-994-2123
Fax: 202-994-5477
[email protected]

Areas of Expertise

Government and politics of the Middle East, democratization and constitutionalism, rule of law in the Arab world

» curriculum vitæ P D F file icon

Nathan Brown received his B.A. in political science from the University of Chicago and his M.A. and Ph.D. in politics and Near Eastern Studies from Princeton University. He teaches courses on Middle Eastern politics, as well as more general courses on comparative politics and international relations. His dissertation received the Malcolm Kerr award from the Middle East Studies Association in 1987.

For 2013-2015, Dr. Brown is president of the Middle East Studies Association, the academic association for scholars studying the region. In 2013, he was named a Guggenheim Fellow; four years earlier, he was named a Carnegie scholar by the Carnegie Corporation of New York. For the 2009–2010 academic year, he was a fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.

In addition to his academic work, Brown serves on the Middle East and North Africa advisory committee for Human Rights Watch and the board of trustees at the American University in Cairo. He has previously served as an advisor for the committee drafting the Palestinian constitution, USAID, the United Nations Development Program, and several NGOs. 


Ph.D., Princeton University


Brown, Nathan J., When Victory Is Not an Option: Islamist Movements in Arab Politics. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2012.

Brown, Nathan J., ed. The Dynamics of Democratization: Dictatorship, Development, and Diffusion. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2012.

Brown, Nathan J., Palestinian Politics After the Oslo Accords: Resuming Arab Palestine. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2003.

Brown, Nathan J., Constitutions in a Non-Constitutional World: Arab Basic Laws and the Prospects for Accountable Government. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press, 2001.

Brown, Nathan J., The Rule of Law in the Arab World: Courts in Egypt and the Gulf . Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997.

Classes Taught

PSC 2334 Global Perpsectives on Democracy

PSC 2377 Compartive Politics of the Middle East

PSC 6377 Comparative Politics of the Middle East

PSC 8334 Democracy and Democratization in Comparative Perspective