Ranj Alaaldin



Ranj Alaaldin is a fellow at the Middle East Council on Global Affairs. He was previously a nonresident fellow at the Foreign Policy Program at the Brookings Institution in Washington D.C. and a visiting scholar at Columbia University. Alaaldin is a foreign policy specialist looking at issues of international security, good governance, climate-related security challenges, track II diplomacy, and the interplay between public policy and human security.

Alaaldin is also the director of Crisis Response Council, a Carnegie Corporation initiative focused on peacebuilding and de-escalation in the Middle East, and advises the World Bank on youth empowerment and the political economy of violence.

Alaaldin obtained his Ph.D. at the London School of Economics, where he also obtained degrees in International Law. He previously worked for a conflict mediation organization in the UK, was an associate fellow at King’s College London and an associate fellow at Oxford Research Group. He has led multiple research teams in the MENA region, including Iraq, Libya, Egypt, Jordan, and Turkey, conducting interviews with political and clerical figures, Shiite militias, and ISIS prisoners.

Alaaldin has written and led studies on post-conflict reconstruction, climate-related security threats, security sector reform, U.S. and European foreign policy for the World Bank, the Carnegie Corporation, and the Geneva Centre for Security Sector Governance. He has presented his work at the World Bank, the House of Commons, and the UK Foreign Affairs Committee. Alaaldin has published in academic journals and edited volumes and writes for the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Foreign Affairs, and Foreign Policy.

Research Areas

  • International security
  • Good governance
  • Post-conflict recovery
  • Conflict resolution

Countries of focus

  • Iraq
  • Syria
  • Iran
  • GCC

Other Areas of Interest

  • Public policy
  • EU foreign policy
  • Armed groups
  • Climate change


  • Ph.D., International History, London School of Economics and Political Science, 2017
  • L.L.M., Public International Law, London School of Economics and Political Science
  • L.L.B., Department of Law, University of Hertfordshire


The expansion of BRICS, announced at the August summit in South Africa, signals an emerging shift in the international order. Middle East Council experts analyze the significance of the bloc on the global stage and discuss questions raised at the summit about multipolarity, de-dollarization, and more.
Galip Dalay, Beverley Milton Edwards, Aisha Al-Sarihi, Shahram Akbarzadeh, Adel Abdel Ghafar, Ranj Alaaldin, June Park, Oumeyma Chelbi, Abdalftah Hamed Ali
The Assad regime may be projecting an aura of power and authority as regional powers move to bring the Syrian state back into the fold, but many prickly issues remain unresolved between the regime and its neighbors that could still spoil the process of reintegration.
Ranj Alaaldin
The recent outbreak of violence in Sudan has already taken a heavy toll on the country and threatened stability abroad. Middle East Council scholars offer their insights on what’s driving the conflict, the imperative to bring it to a swift end, and its implications for Sudan and beyond.
Nader S. Kabbani, Paul Dyer, Larbi Sadiki, Adel Abdel Ghafar, Sahar Khamis, Ranj Alaaldin, Dania Thafer, Faozi Al-Goidi
The resumption of diplomatic relations between Saudi Arabia and Iran has generated significant optimism that it can lead to de-escalation in the region’s many conflicts. That hope needs to be tempered, as the local actors doing the fighting will have the decisive say in war and peace.
Ranj Alaaldin
Twenty years have passed since the United States invaded Iraq in March 2003, leaving the country and the wider region forever changed. In this Council Views, Middle East Council experts reflect on this seminal moment in the region’s modern history and what has ensued in the two decades since. 
Galip Dalay, Omar H. Rahman, Ranj Alaaldin, Faozi Al-Goidi, Adel Abdel Ghafar, Robert P. Beschel Jr., Tarik M. Yousef, Larbi Sadiki