Centre for the Study of Global Regions

The Centre for the Study of Global Regions (CSGR) consists of two research units: Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and the Asia Pacific (AP). While focusing primarily on their own area and issue specialization, the CSGR researchers study actors, institutions, and processes impacting regional politics, states, societies and communities. The Centre’s researchers do not subscribe to a single disciplinary tradition. Instead, they employ theories and methods developed within Comparative Politics, International Relations, Political Economy, Political Sociology, Anthropology, Cultural Studies and related disciplines. This allows research projects carried out at the CSGR to explore different levels of regional politics, ranging from the dynamics of domestic political arenas to complex entanglements of regional actors with global political and economic structures. As it is aware of its own positionality as a Prague-based institution, critical reflection of Czech and European debates on the Middle East and Asia is an indivisible part of the Centre’s research agenda.

Head of the Centre: J. Daniel

Middle East and North Africa Politics Unit – Head: J. Daniel

Team: A. Bermant, S. Hussein, P. Musil

Asia Pacific Unit – Head: A. Kizeková

Team: R. Fürst, M. Nožina

Middle East and North Africa Politics Unit

The academic and policy-oriented research pursued by the MENA Unit coalesces around three broader themes. The first entails a focus on political regimes in MENA with a particular interest in their transformation and transition following the period of popular contestation, as well as research on the forms of such contestation and resistance. The second concerns security issues (primarily regional conflicts and armed movements) and critical inquiry into the modalities of international involvement in the prevention and containment of conflicts and violence. Finally, the third theme is related specifically to European and Czech policies towards the MENA region.

Asia Pacific Unit

The research in the Asia Pacific Unit primarily focuses on cultural, economic, political, societal and security-related research of priority countries in five subregions, Central Asia, East Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific, by tapping into the expertise of the unit’s experts and affiliated experts. The aim is to provide analyses in the contexts of the latest strategies and initiatives of key actors in this area; the main trends and changes and their geopolitical impacts on local governments, and bilateral and regional cooperation; as well as the related interactions in the global arena.

The research outputs deal with single-country analyses, selected states, or themes. The unit’s experts provide policy briefs and reports that reflect on the trends of the Czech foreign policy in the Asia Pacific and help with identifying concrete recommendations in regard to short-to-longer-term goals, aims and priorities. Additionally, the unit’s activities and publications reflect on interactions between Europe (the European Union) and Asia.

We aim to produce quality outputs with an impact at the level of scientific articles, as is customary in the IIR, as well as analyses and studies which provide politically unbiased information for state institutions, especially the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs. We also engage with a broader professional network, young researchers and students, informed members of the public and media. We welcome topical, innovative, and different opinions anchored in an acceptable theoretical context and quality empirical argumentation. The Asia Pacific Unit is open to interdisciplinary projects and partnerships through collaborative studies and joint events.