Bessma Momani

Bessma Momani is a senior fellow, joining CIGI in 2004. She has a Ph.D. in political science with a focus on international political economy and is full professor at the University of Waterloo.

Photo of Bessma Momani, Senior Fellow, Centre for International Governance Innovation
Expertise
Middle Eastern Economics
Middle Eastern Foreign Policy
International Financial Institutions
International Monetary Fund

Bio

Bessma Momani is a senior fellow, joining CIGI in 2004. She has a Ph.D. in political science with a focus on international political economy and is full professor at the University of Waterloo. She is a nonresident senior fellow at the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington, DC, and a Fulbright Scholar. She was a 2015 fellow of the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation and also previously served as a non-resident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington, DC, and as  a non-resident fellow at the Stimson Center, and was a visiting scholar at Georgetown University’s Mortara Center.

Bessma currently sits on the board of the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation and the University of Waterloo’s Cybersecurity and Privacy Institute. She is also an adviser to the National Security Transparency Advisory Group at Public Safety Canada.

Bessma has received a number of awards and prizes for her research and work. She has been awarded multiple Insight Development Grants, Insight Grants and Connection Grants funded by Canada’s Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council. She is currently the leader of a three-year-funded Department of National Defence network called the Defence and Security Foresight Group tasked with providing policy-relevant advice to the Department of National Defence.

In recent years, Bessma spearheaded the Pluralism Project with Trudeau Mentor Jillian Stirk, which explored the link between diversity and economic prosperity and the role of globally connected citizens. This has led to a multi-million-dollar funding grant from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada on a pilot project bringing visible minority women into the Canadian economy.

Bessma has authored, co-authored and co-edited numerous books, including:

  • Strengthening the Canadian Armed Forces through Diversity and Inclusion;
  • What’s Wrong with the IMF and How to Fix It;
  • Egypt beyond Tahrir Square;
  • Arab Dawn: Arab Youth and the Demographic Dividend They Will Bring;
  • Targeted Transnationals: The State, the Media, and Arab Canadians;
  • Shifting Geo-Economic Power of the Gulf: Oil, Finance and Institutions;
  • From Desolation to Reconstruction: Iraq’s Troubled Journey;
  • Canada and the Middle East: In Theory and Practice;
  • IMF-Egyptian Debt Negotiations; and
  • Twentieth Century World History: A Canadian Perspective.

In addition, Bessma has written more than 80 scholarly papers or book chapters examining the IMF, the World Bank, gender and diversity, petrodollars, the political economy of the Middle East and the geopolitics of the Arab Gulf and the Middle East, and published in numerous journals, including: 

  • Review of International Political Economy
  • International Political Sociology;
  • Canadian Public Administration
  • Asian Affairs
  • Global Society
  • Journal of International Relations and Development
  • New Political Economy;
  • International Journal
  • Canadian Journal of Political Science
  • Review of International Organizations
  • Middle East Review of International Affairs
  • The World Economy
  • New Political Economy;  
  • Journal of European Integration; and 
  • World Economics.

As a political analyst on the Middle East, international affairs and the global economy, Bessma has written editorials in The Globe and MailThe New York Times, Time, Newsweekthe National Post and the Toronto Star. She is also a regular media contributor, having done thousands of live interviews, with CNN, CBC News, CTV, Al Jazeera, CGTN, TRT World and BNN Bloomberg

In the News

Select Publications

  1. Momani, Bessma & Hibben, Mark
    .
    2017
    . "
    What's Wrong with the IMF?
    "
    .
    (Forthcoming ) Polity Press
    .
  2. Mohamed, Eid and Bessma Momani
    .
    2016
    . "
    Tahrir Square and Beyond: Critical Perspectives on Politics, Law and Security
    "
    .
    (eds) (Forthcoming ) Indiana University Press
    .
  3. Dewitt, David & Bessma Momani
    .
    2016
    . "
    Canada and the Middle East after Afghanistan
    "
    .
    (July ) in Canada after Afghanistan: Reflections on Canadian International Security Policy Edited by James Fergusson and Francis Furtado University of British Columbia Press
    .
  4. Opatowski, Michael Opondo, Michaal and Bessma Momani
    .
    2016
    . "
    Youth Evaluations of Countering Violent Extremism and Anti-Radicalization Programming in Kenya
    "
    .
    (July ) Journal for Deradicalization Vol 7 Pages 164-224
    .
  5. Malkin, Anton & Bessma Momani
    .
    2016
    . "
    An Effective Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank: A Bottom Up Approach
    "
    .
    (July ) in Global Policy DOI: 101111/1758-589912357
    .
  6. Hakak, Tanzeel and Bessma Momani
    .
    2016
    . "
    Syria and the Responsibility to Protect
    "
    .
    (July ) in The Oxford Handbook on the Responsibility to Protect Co-edited by Timothy Dunne and Alexander Bellamy Oxford University Press
    .
  7. Hibben, Mark
    .
    2015
    . "
    Cooperation or Clashes on 19th Street? Theorizing and Assessing IMF and World Bank Colloboration
    "
    .
    (December ) (December 2015) in Journal of International Organizational Studies Vol 6 Issue 2 Pages 27-43
    .
  8. Momani, Bessma
    .
    2015
    . "
    An Arab Dawn: The Demographic Dividend of Arab Youth
    "
    .
    University of Toronto Press
    .
  9. St. Amand, Samantha and Bessma Momani
    .
    2015
    . "
    Best Practices in Central Banks' Organizational Culture, Learning and Structure: Case of the Moroccan Central Bank
    "
    .
    (October ) in Economic Notes Vol 44 No 3 Pages 449-481
    .
  10. Momani, Bessma
    .
    2015
    . "
    China and the IMF in Enter the Dragon: China in the International Financial System
    "
    .
    (October ) Co-edited by Hongying Wang and Domenico Lombardi CIGI Press
    .
  11. Hampson Fen and Bessma Momani
    .
    2015
    . "
    Hands On or Hands Off? Lessons from the Arab Spring
    "
    .
    (September ) in Arab Spring: Negotiating in the Shadow of Intifadat Edited by William Zartman Georgia University Press
    .
  12. Jaffer, Zahra, Luna Khirfan and Bessma Momani
    .
    2013
    . "
    Geoforum
    "
    .
    Whose authority? Exporting Canadian urban planning expertise to Jordan and Abu Dhabi.
    .
    (December ) 50
    .
  13. Hennebry, Jenna and Bessma Momani
    .
    2013
    . "
    Targeted Transnationals: The State, the Media, and Arab-Canadians
    "
    .
    (eds) (forthcoming ) Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press
    .
  14. Khirfan, Luna and Bessma Momani
    .
    2013
    . "
    Place Branding and Public Diplomacy
    "
    .
    (Re)branding Amman: A 'lived' city's values, image and identity.
    .
  15. Ennis, Crystal and Bessma Momani
    .
    2012
    . "
    Cambridge Review of International Affairs
    "
    .
    Between Caution and Controversy: Lessons from the Gulf Arab States as (Re)Emerging Donors.
    .
    25 no 4
    .
  16. Holroyd, Carin and Bessma Momani
    .
    2012
    . "
    Social Science Japan Journal
    "
    .
    Japan's Rescue of the IMF.
    .
    15 no 2
    .
  17. Cooper, Andrew and Bessma Momani
    .
    2011
    . "
    The International Spectator
    "
    .
    Qatar and Expanded Contours of Small State Diplomacy.
    .
    46 no 3
    .
  18. Legrenzi, Matteo and Bessma Momani
    .
    2011
    . "
    Shifting Geo-Economic Power of the Gulf
    "
    .
    (eds) London: Ashgate
    .

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