The persistently low oil prices since late 2014 have led a number of Gulf Cooperation Council countries to engage in major economic reform programs as well as serious belt tightening with respect to public expenditure. The aim of these programs is to permanently lower fiscal obligations and to diversify their economies away from a heavy dependence on oil and gas revenues. This is not the first time these countries have faced such constraints and in the past, they have failed at reducing their heavy dependence on oil rents. Saudi Arabia's Vision 2030 is the most serious example of such a renewed reform effort and it is worthy of careful study. Among the policies that are associated with Vision 2030 are reductions in subsidies for oil, electricity and water, which signal a serious intent to carry through with real change and reform this time around. Combined with these reforms the GCC countries have increased engagement (e.g., FDI, cooperation among SOEs, student scholarship programs) with countries in East Asia, most notably China, which represent the most important future consumers of Middle Eastern energy resources. The economic models adopted by countries like China, and perhaps more importantly Singapore, have been noticed in the Gulf and there is a desire to reproduce some aspects of these. This has been especially the case in the smaller countries of the GCC, such as the United Arab Emirates, but now even Saudi Arabia wishes to follow suit. To what extent can Singapore's experience be replicated in the Gulf is a question worth exploring, too. The Transregional Studies Institute at Princeton will be focusing in the academic years 2017-2018 and 2018-2019 on such questions of political economy as well as on the commercial and political ties between the Gulf and the rest of Asia across the Indian Ocean. Announcement.
How to Apply
Interested applicants must apply online at the link provided below and submit a current curriculum vitae, a research statement (maximum length 2 pages), a cover letter, and contact information for three references. The deadline for application is June 18, 2017, 11:59 p.m. EST.
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