Research Associate
Spoken languages
French, English, Arabic
Areas of expertise
  • Authoritarian regimes
  • Political economy of the Middle East and North Africa
  • Leadership
  • Civil conflicts
Geographical Region of Expertise
  • Middle East
  • North Africa


Souhail Belhadj holds a PhD in Political Science from Sciences Po, Paris. He is the author of the book "La Syrie de Bashar al-Asad, Anatomie d'un régime autoritaire" (Belin, 2013). His current research focuses on the transition process in Syria and Tunisia, with a focus on the local government and politics. He worked on a three-year project named "Tunisia: Security Provision and Local State Authority in a Time of Transition", with the support of the Gerda Henkel Foundation. In parallel, he is conducting research on the economy of violence and armed conflict in Syria.


selected publications

  • La Syrie de Bashar al-Asad. Anatomie d'un régime autoritaire. Belin, 2013.

  • Décentraliser dans la Tunisie post-autoritaire: l’émergence d’un pouvoir local face aux limites du consensus sécuritaire. Working paper. Centre on Conflict Development and Peacbuilding, Geneva. September 2018.

  • Sectarianism and Civil Conflict in Syria: Reconfigurations of a Reluctant Issue, in Paola Rivetti and Hendrik Kraetzschmar, Transformation of Political Islam. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, June 2018. (With Laura Ruiz de Elvira)

  • L’appareil sécuritaire syrien, socle d’un régime miné par la guerre civile. Confluences Méditerranée. Vol 2-n° 89. 2014.

  • "The country should unite first”: State and territory in Syria under the Baath rules, in Matthieu Cimino Exploring Syria's Borders and Boundaries. Palgrave Macmillan (September, 2019).

  • Une décentralisation au-dessus de tout soupçon ? L'enjeu du pouvoir local dans la transition post-autoritaire, in Vincent Geisser and Amin Allal La Tunisie au présent: une démocratisation au-dessus de tout soupçon? CNRS Éditions, juin 2018.