Afyare A. Elmi

Nonresident Senior Fellow


Afyare A. Elmi is a nonresident senior fellow at the Middle East Council for Global Affairs. He is also a research professor at the City University of Mogadishu and a senior research fellow at the Heritage Institute for Policy Studies in Somalia.  

Previously, Elmi was the executive director of the Heritage Institute for Policy Studies in Mogadishu. Prior, he was an Associate Professor of Security Studies at Qatar University’s Gulf Studies Program. Elmi’s research interests include conflict, security, and peacebuilding/state-building in Africa and the Middle East.  

Elmi has published a book, Understanding the Somalia Conflagration: Identity, Political Islam, and Peacebuilding (Pluto Press, 2010). He has authored or co-authored over 30 peer-reviewed publications and a dozen policy papers. He has also authored opinion articles in leading international media outlets such as Foreign Affairs, International Herald Tribune, Boston Globe, and Al-Jazeera English. 

Research Areas

  • Conflict/Security 
  • Peacebuilding and State-building 
  • Non-state actors 

Countries of Focus

  • Gulf-Africa  
  • Somalia 
  • Ethiopia 
  • Kenya 

Other Areas of Interest

  • Maritime Security 
  • Governance 
  • Political Islam 


  • Ph.D., Political Science, University of Alberta, 2009
  • M.A., Education Policy, University of Toronto, 2005
  • M.A., Political Science, Brock University, 2002
  • B.A., Public Administration, Ryerson University, 1997