Michael Herb

Professor, Department of Political Science
Georgia State University
Office: 1024 Langdale

Research Interests

My research interests are tied together by a concern with the issue of democracy in the Arab world, and especially in the Gulf monarchies. I have written on the resilience of monarchism in the Arab World, on the political consequences of oil rents, and on the political economy of rentierism in the Gulf.

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The Wages of Oil: ‎Parliaments and economic development in Kuwait and the UAE., Cornell University Press, 2014

All in the Family: Absolutism, Revolution and Democracy in the Middle Eastern Monarchies. State University of New York Press, 1999.

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Current Projects, Working Papers, Etc.

Kuwait Politics Database & other data


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Articles & Chapters

"A Nation of Bureaucrats: Political Participation and Economic Diversification in Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates," 2009, International Journal of Middle East Studies," 41, no. 3 (August), 375-395

“Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates,” in Politics and Society of the Contemporary Middle East,” edited by Michelle Penner Angrist. 2012, 2nd edition (first edition 2010). Boulder: Lynne Reinner.

"Kuwait: Parliamentary Politics and Obstacles to Democracy." 2008. In Political Liberalization in the Persian Gulf. Ed. Joshua Teitelbaum. New York: Columbia University Press.

"No Representation without Taxation? Rents, Development and Democracy," 2005, Comparative Politics 37, no.3 (April): 297-317.

"Princes and Parliaments in the Arab World." 2004. Middle East Journal. 58, no. 3 (Summer): 367-384.

"Taxation and Representation," 2003, Studies in Comparative International Development, 38, no. 3 (Fall): 3-31.

"Emirs and Parliaments in the Gulf." 2002. Journal of Democracy. 13, no. 4 (October): 41-47.  

"Iran and the Shi'a of the Arab States of the Gulf." 1999. In Ethnic Conflict and International Politics in the Middle East, edited by Leonard Binder. University Press of Florida. 

Short Pieces

“The Saudi Succession and Challenges Facing the Kingdom,” Expert Analysis, NOREF Norwegian Peacebuilding Resource Centre, August 2014.

“Kuwait's Endless Elections: The Opposition in Retreat,” Policy Brief, Project on Middle East Democracy (POMED), September 2013.

"A Respite In Kuwait?" Middle East Channel, foreignpolicy.com, 21 December 2012

"Monarchism Matters" Middle East Channel, foreignpolicy.com, 26 November 2012

"Parliaments in the Gulf Monarchies: A Long Way from Democracy," 2004. Arab Reform Bulletin, 2, no. 10: 7-8. Click here for a local copy, and here for the Bulletin at the Carnegie Endowment.

Updated 27 April 2015