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Josef Korbel School of International Studies

Center for Middle East Studies


Welcome to the Center for Middle East Studies (CMES) at the University of Denver's Josef Korbel School of International Studies. CMES is an interdisciplinary institution dedicated to the study of Middle Eastern politics, history, and culture. We seek to engage the University of Denver community and broader public in informed discussion on topics of regional importance in an effort to deepen understanding of this critical region of the world.

To join the discussion and learn about upcoming events and publications, please subscribe to our Email List by contacting us at We hope to see and hear from you! 

Upcoming Annual Conference

What Went Wrong? Egypt's Failed Democratic Transition

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The Center for Middle East Studies presents a Daylong Conference Examining Egypt's Failed Democratic Transition

Friday, September 12, 2014
Panel Discussions: 9:15 am - 4:30 pm | Location: Anderson Academic Commons Special Events Room

  • 9:15 - 9:30 am: Opening remarks - Ambassador Christopher Hill, Dean of the Josef Korbel School, and Nader Hashemi, Director of the Center for Middle East Studies
  • 9:30 - 11:00 am: The Role of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt's Democratic Transition
    • Mona El-Ghobashy, Independet Scholar
    • Joshua Stacher, Kent State University
    • Shadi Hamid, Brookings Institution
    • Emad El-Din Shahin, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars
  • 11:15 am - 12:45 pm: Islamism, Liberalism, & Democratic Theory - Lessons from Egypt's Failed Transition
    • Andrew F. March, Yale University
    • Mohammad Fadel, University of Toronto
    • Daniel Brumberg, Georgetown University and the United States Institute of Peace
    • Micheline Ishay, Josef Korbel School of International Studies, University of Denver
  • 3:00 - 4:30 pm: Ideology, Mass Media, Popular Culture, & the Public Sphere in Egypt - Explaining the Outbreak of Fascism
    • Mohamad Elmasry, University of North Alabama
    • Joel Gordon, University of Arkansas
    • Ellis Goldberg, University of Washington
    • Abdullah Al-Arian, Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, Qatar
  • 7:00 - 10:00 pm: Screening of Jehane Noujaim's Documentary Film THE SQUARE Followed by a Panel Discussion & Open Forum,  Margery Reed Building Reiman Theater
    • Daniel Brumberg
    • Mohammad Fadel
    • Monah El-Ghobashy
    • Emad El-Din Shahin
    • Ellis Goldberg

For more information, visit the Josef Korbel School website and the CMES Facebook Event Page

Noteworthy Events from 2013-14

February 18, 2014: A Conversation with Dr. Mohammad Javad Zarif, Minister of Foreign Affairs for the Islamic Republic of Iran

The Center for Middle East Studies was proud to host a video conference with Dr. Mohammad Javad Zarif, Minister of Foreign Affairs to the Islamic Republic of Iran, on February 18 at 12:00 PM in the Anderson Academic Commons Special Events Space. The event, which marked the first direct communication between Minister Zarif and an American public audience, was moderated by Ambassador Christopher R. Hill, Dean of the Josef Korbel School of International Studies. Dr. Zarif discussed the current contours of US-Iranian relations with Dean Hill via video conference from Vienna, Austria, where he was working with Secretary of State John Kerry on finalizing a deal regarding Iran's nuclear program.
Dr. Mohammad Javad Zarif is the Minister of Foreign Affairs for the Islamic Republic of Iran. Prior to assuming that post in August 2013, Dr. Zarif served as Iran's Ambassador to the United Nations (2002-2007) and Iran's Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs (1992-2002). In addition to his distinguished diplomatic career, Dr. Zarif is a proud University of Denver alumnus, earning both his MA and PhD in International Studies from DU's Graduate School of International Studies (now the Josef Korbel School) in 1984 and 1988, respectively.