The Global Studies Conference will feature plenary sessions by some of the world’s leading thinkers and innovators in the field, as well as numerous parallel presentations by researchers and practitioners.

Khaldoun Hasan Al-Naqeeb Peter Moore
Muhammad Ayish Jan Nederveen Pieterse
Georges Corm George Ritzer
Lena Jayyusi Oliver Schwedes
Habibiul Haque Khondker

Garden Conversation Sessions

Plenary Speakers will make formal 30-minute presentations. They will also participate in 60-minute Garden Conversations - unstructured sessions that allow delegates a chance to meet the speakers and talk with them informally about the issues arising from their presentation.

Please return to this page for regular updates.

The Speakers

Khaldoun Hasan Al-Naqeeb

Dr. Khaldoun Hasan Al-Naqeeb is an Associate Professor of Sociology and Social Psychology at Kuwait University. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin, and his Masters in Social Psychology from the University of Louisvile. His previous positions include Chairperson in the Department of Sociology and Social Work, and Dean of the College of the Arts, at Kuwait University, Editor in Chief of the Journal of the Social Sciences, and founder and Editor in Chief of the Arab Journal for the Humanities (Kuwait University). He is a member of the board of regents for the Center fo Arab Unity Studies, Beirut, Lebanon; the National Council on Culture, Education and the Arts for the State of Kuwait; and President of the Arab Association of Sociology ‘Beirut’.

Muhammad Ayish

Muhammad Ayish is currently professor of communication at the University of Sharjah, United Arab Emirates. He holds two bachelor degrees in broadcast journalism and English literature from the University of Missouri, Columbia (1979); a master’s degree in international television from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities (1983) and a doctoral degree from the same university in international broadcasting and public diplomacy (1986). He had served as Dean of the College of Communication, University of Sharjah from 2002-2008. He has over 50 articles and book chapters published in international journals and books on Arab media, new technologies, broadcasting and media and politics. His most recent book is : The New Arab Public Sphere (2008) Berlin: Frank & Timme). He also contributes a weekly column on media, culture, and education to the daily The National newspaper published in Abu Dhabi, UAE.

Georges Corm

Georges Corm is Lebanese (born in 1940). He studied in Paris and graduated from The Institut d’Etudes Politiques (with majors in Economy and Public Finance) in 1961 and from the Faculté de Droit et de Sciences Economiques  (Ph.d. in Constitutional Law  in 1969). He began his career with the Lebanese Civil Service in 1963. In 1969 he entered the field of Arab and International banking. In 1980 he became Advisor to the Governor of the Central Bank of Lebanon and in 1985 he established in Paris as an independent Economic and Financial Consultant for Arab and International institutions as well as several private financial institutions and companies. In December 1998 he was appointed, Minister of Finance of the Lebanese Republic (up to October 2000). He designed and began to implement a Five years Fiscal Stabilization Plan (1999-2004), prepared the Privatization law adopted in spring 2000, paid all State arrears to the private sector and prepared the introduction of VAT (law, implementation regulations and training).

He has been Professor Lecturer since 1969 at various Lebanese Universities and is now Professor at Saint-Joseph University where he teaches “International Economic Cooperation” and “Financial Management of the State”.

He is a member of several academic boards in the ME and Europe and Member of the Board of Trustees and Secretary General of the Arab Organization to Fight Corruption. He has published extensively in Arabic, French and English on economic topics (Debt and Development – Prager, NY; The Arab Economy at Cross-roads,  Dar el Talia, Beirut; The political Economy of Reconstruction in Lebanon, Dar El Jadid, Beirut; Le nouveau désordre économique mondial, La Découverte, Paris) and the history of the Middle East (Fragmentation of the Middle East, Hutchinson, London, East and West. The imaginary Divide, Dar El Saqi, Beirut). His books are translated in several languages. For more information, please see:

Lena Jayyusi

Lena Jayyusi is currently an Associate Professor and Director of the Graduate Program in the College of Communication and Media Sciences at Zayed University in the UAE. She is also a Senior Research Associate with Muwatin: The Palestinian Institute for the Study of Democracy in Ramallah, Palestine. She was Chair of the Communication Studies Department at Cedar Crest College in Pennsylvania for several years, and between 1994-95 she was an Annenberg Scholar at the Annenberg School of Communication at the University of Pennsylvania. Between 1995 and 2002 she conducted research and program development in Palestine, first as an SSRC Fellow and a Ford Foundation grantee for research on Palestinian media and national discourse in the post-Oslo period, and subsequently as a Senior Research Fellow working on collaborative projects between Muwatin and both the Chris. Michelsen Research Institute in Norway, and the Tampere Peace Research Institute in Finland During that period she also served as a senior TOKTEN consultant for the United Nations Development Project in Palestine on a number of projects including the establishment of the Oral History program at Shaml: The Palestinian Refugee and Diaspora Institute. As Director of Academic Programs at the Institute of Modern Media of Al Quds University between 1997-1999 she helped establish the UNESCO Chair for Freedom of Expression there. Her scholarship and research is interdisciplinary, drawing from sociology, political science, cultural studies, language and discourse studies and philosophy among others, and addressing topics in media, film and visuality, memory and narrative, oral history, the organization of everyday life and reasoning, national identity, citizenship and democracy and the globalization of human rights discourse. Author of Categorization and the Moral Order (Routledge & Kegan Paul)- now considered a classic in its field and due out in French in 2009- she is finalizing an edited collection entitled “Aborted Modernity: The Colonial Transformation of Jerusalem 1917-2006” to be published by Interlink Publishers in 2009, as well as an Arabic language reader on Media and Democracy to be published by Muwatin in 2009. She is a member of the international Editorial/Advisory Boards of several journals including Critical Arts: A Journal of North-South Media and Cultural Studies, the Middle East Journal of Culture and Communication, Feminist Media Studies, Subjectivity and The International Journal of Media and Cultural Politics. She is regional editor for the Middle East for the journal Global Media and Communication.

Habibiul Haque Khondker

Habibiul Haque Khondker is a Professor of the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences at Zayed University, Abu Dhabi, UAE. He taught at the National University of Singapore until 2005. He held visiting appointments at University of Pittsburgh, Institute of Social Studies, the Hague, Columbia University, and Cornell University. He was educated in Dhaka University, Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada and University of Pittsburgh, USA.

Dr. Khondker’s articles on globalization, state, civil society, democracy, famine, internet, science and gender issues have been published in journals such as International Sociology, The British Journal of Sociology, Current Sociology, Globalizations, Armed Forces and Society, International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, International Journal of Contemporary Sociology, International Journal of Mass Emergencies, Asian Journal of Social Science, South Asia, Bulletin of Science, Technology and Society, Economic and Political Weekly. He is the editor of Asia and Europe in Globalization: Continents, Regions, and Nations (Brill 2006) [with Goran Therborn]. Dr. Khondker is on the editorial board of Globalizations (Routledge) and Journal of Classical Sociology (Sage).

Peter Moore

Peter Moore is an Associate Professor of Political Science at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, USA. For the 2009 academic year, Peter took a Fulbright lecture and research grant at the University of Zayed, UAE, where he taught and also engaged in additional research for his book in progress on the political economy of the war in Iraq. His research interests include; economic development and state-society relations in the Middle East and Africa (specifically, Gulf Arab States and Levant); business-state relations, privatization, and decentralization; sub-state conflict and regional security.

Jan Nederveen Pieterse

Jan Nederveen Pieterse is a Mellichamp Professor in the faculty of Global and International Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara, USA and specializes in globalization, development studies and cultural studies. He has been a visiting professor in Brazil, China, Germany, India, Indonesia, Japan, Pakistan, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sweden and Thailand. In addition, he lectures in many countries and is associate editor of several journals (Futures, Globalizations, European Journal of Social Theory, Ethnicities, Third Text, Journal of Social Affairs). Recent books are Ethnicities and Global Multiculture: Pants for an Octopus (Rowman & Littlefield, 2007), Globalization or Empire? (Routledge, 2004), Globalization and Culture: Global Mélange (Rowman & Littlefield, 2003) and Development Theory: Deconstructions/ Reconstructions (Sage, 2001). URL

George Ritzer

George Ritzer is Distinguished University Professor at the University of Maryland and is the recipient of several other awards and honors including: Honorary Doctorate from La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia; Honorary Patron, University Philosophical Society, Trinity College, Dublin; American Sociological Association’s Distinguished Contribution to Teaching Award. Dr. Ritzer has chaired the American Sociological Association’s Section on Theoretical Sociology, as well as the Section on Organizations and Occupations.

Among Dr. Ritzer’s books in metatheory are Sociology: A Multiple Paradigm Science and Metatheorzing in Sociology. In the application of social theory to the social world, his books include The McDonaldization of Society, Enchanting a Disenchanted World, and The Globalization of Nothing. Sage has published two volumes of his collected works, one in theory and the other in the application of theory to the social world, especially consumption. In the latter area, he is founding editor of the Journal of Consumer Culture. His books have been translated into over twenty languages, with over a dozen translations of The McDonaldization of Society alone.

Oliver Schwedes

Dr. Oliver Schwedes, Diplom-Politologe and Diplom-Soziologe, is with Technical University Berlin. He studied Political Science, Sociology, Philosophy and Psychology in Marburg, Berlin, Edinburgh. His dissertation was about the subject “The formation of new towns. Power- and decision making structures in a local community”. From 2002-2008 he was a research fellow at the WZB in the research unit “Innovation and Organization” with focus on “Public Transport” and “Transport Politics”. Responsible for the project “Mobility in a Competitive Framework” funded by the Hans-Böckler-Foundation. At last managing editor of the Handbook of Transport Policy. Oliver is the winner of the International Award for Excellence in the area of global studies.