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Department of Politics and International Studies

Mr Gerasimos Tsourapas

BA (Yale University), MSc (LSE)


Gerasimos Tsourapas
Mr Gerasimos Tsourapas
Email address:
SOAS, University of London
Thornhaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1H 0XG
Russell Square: College Buildings
Office No:
Room 221
Office Hours:
By appointment only, Tuesdays 4 - 6
Thesis title:
Trading People, Consolidating Power: Authoritarianism and the Institutionalisation of Emigration in Egypt
Year of Study:

PhD Research

I am currently a Ph.D. student at the Politics & International Relations Department at SOAS, University of London. During the 2013-14 academic year I am a Visiting Fellow at the Center for Migration and Refugee Studies of the American University of Cairo, and a Guest Researcher at the Netherlands-Flemish Institute, Leiden University in Cairo.

My doctoral dissertation focuses on Egypt in the 1970-2011 period as a case study of the ways in which authoritarian regimes selectively use emigration control as a means towards furthering their aims. Thus, I am broadly interested in state involvement in emigrants’ affairs, primarily across the Middle East region. I have published peer-reviewed articles on authoritarian durability in Tunisia, and the European Union’s foreign policy towards Egypt.

Prior to coming to SOAS, I attended Yale University (B.A., Political Science and Economics), and the London School of Economics and Political Science (M.Sc., International Political Economy). My employment history includes working as a researcher for the Hellenic Ministry of Foreign Affairs (2009-11), and as a European Union elections observer, most recently at the Tunisian Constituent Assembly elections. During the latter I was deployed to Tunis and Brussels, where I participated in the Union’s first attempt at monitoring out-of-country voting.

PhD Publications

Peer-Reviewed Articles
  • 'Nasser’s Educators & Agitators across al-Watan al-‘Arabi: Tracing the Foreign Policy Importance of Egyptian Regional Migration, 1952-1967.' British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies (forthcoming)
  • 'Why Do States Develop Multi-Tier Emigrant Policies? Evidence from Egypt.' Journal of Ethnic & Migration Studies (forthcoming)
  • ‘The Other Side of a Neoliberal Miracle: Economic Reform and Political De-Liberalization in Ben Ali's Tunisia.’ Mediterranean Politics, Vol. 18, No. 1, Spring 2013, pp. 23-41.
  • ‘The Limits of Norm Promotion: The EU in Egypt and Israel/Palestine’ (with Elena Lazarou and Maria Gianniou). Insight Turkey, Vol. 15, No. 2, Spring 2013, pp. 171-193.
Book Chapters
  • ‘Migration,’ in G. Newby (ed.), The Islamic World: An Encyclopaedia of History, Culture, and Society (New York, M.E. Sharpe) (forthcoming).
Book Reviews
  • ‘Mariz Tadros, The Muslim Brotherhood in Contemporary Egypt: Democracy Redefined or Confined?', (London: Routledge, 2012), pp. 196. 'Polyvocia, SOAS Journal of Graduate Research,' Vol. 5, pp. 49-53.
Other Publications
  • 'The Politics of Egyptian Migration to Libya,' Middle East Report (MERIP) March 2015.
  • ‘Notes from the Field: Researching Emigration in Post-2011 Egypt,’ American Political Science Association Migration & Citizenship Newsletter,' Vol. 2, pp. 58-62

PhD Conferences

American Political Science Association Conferences

  • Invited presentation at the 2015 Annual Meeting; San Francisco — ‘Migration & Authoritarian Regimes’ Cooperation: Egypt in the Arab Regional System.’


  • Panel Organiser & Presenter at the 2014 Annual Meeting; Washington, DC — Panel title: 'Emigration, Diaspora, and the Sending State.’ Paper Title: ‘Prodigal Sons, Partial Fathers: Explaining Variation in Egypt’s Treatment of Emigrant Populations.’


Middle East Studies Association Meetings

  • Invited presentation at the 2015 Annual Meeting, Denver — ‘Nasser’s Educators and Agitators across al-Watan al-‘Arabi: Tracing the Foreign Policy Importance of Egyptian Regional Migration, 1952-1967.’


International Studies Association Conventions

  • Panel Organiser at the 2015 Annual Convention; New Orleans — Panel Title: ‘Migration Governance in the post-‘Arab Spring’ Middle East.’


  • Invited presentation at the 2014 Annual Convention; Toronto — ‘Returning from Saudi: Redefinitions of Citizenship in Neoliberal Egypt.’


Other Conferences [Selection]

  • BISA 2015 Workshop Co-Convenor, London — Workshop Title: ‘Sending States, Emigrants & Diasporas: New Trends & Novel Approaches in Political Science.’


  • Invited presentation at the 2015 European University Institute Migration Working Group; Florence — Panel Title: ‘Migrants as Objects and Subjects of Democratic Politics.’ Paper Title: ‘Explaining Variation in States’ Treatment of Emigrant Populations. The Case of Egypt, 1970-2011.’


  • Invited presentation at the 2015 Annual Political Science Association International Conference; Sheffield — ‘Trading People, Consolidating Power: Assessing the Impact of Emigrant Policy on Authoritarian Regimes’ Durability.’


  • Invited presentation at the 2015 DVPW Comparative Political Section Conference (GIGA); Hamburg—‘Trading People, Consolidating Power: Egyptian Authoritarianism & Migration Governance in the Middle East.’


  • Invited presentation at 2014 ‘The Role of Diasporas, Migrants and Exiles in the Arab Revolutions and Political Transitions’ WAFAW Conference, Tunis — ‘Paying the Piper, Calling the Tune? Assessing the Impact of Emigration on Egypt’s Foreign Policy.’


  • Invited presentation at the 2014 German Middle East Studies Association [DAVO] Annual Conference; Cologne — ‘Nasser’s Educators and Agitators across al-Watan al-Arabi: The Development and Politics of Regional Egyptian Migration, 1952–1970.’


  • Invited presentation at the 2014 Annual Gulf Research Meeting; Cambridge — ‘The Bifurcation of Egypt’s Diaspora Policy.’


  • Invited presentation at the 2014 British Society for Middle Eastern Studies [BRISMES] Annual Conference; Sussex — ‘Paying the Piper, Calling the Tune: Labor-Importing States’ Influence on Egypt’s Foreign Policy.’