MDC Occasional Papers

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The MDC’s Occasional Papers are original research articles (6,000-12,000 words) that address aspects of contemporary Middle Eastern and African politics, society, economy, and culture. Our research traditionally focuses on analysis that identifies change and continuity across time and place, with a particular emphasis on approaching the region from the inside-out. MDC Occasional Papers undergo external blind peer review to help ensure that they meet our high standards of academic and policy relevant excellence.

Occasional Papers will be published twice a year beginning in the fall of 2021. They will be published in digital format and distributed through our mailing list, web site, and social media. If you would like to submit your work, and you are unsure whether it would be a good fit, please contact the Editor, Brandon Friedman, at

Submission guidelines are available upon request.

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The “Four Plus One”: The Changing Power Politics of the Middle East

In this inaugural MDC Occasional Paper, Josh Krasna and George Meladze analyze the structure of power in the Middle East during the past decade, mapping the main regional players and the interrelationships between them, and assessing the potential for future change in the politics of the region.