I am a comparative political scientist at the American University in Cairo and Middle East Faculty Advisor at the NATO Defense College in Rome.
My research focuses on the politics of militaries as well as the dynamics of regime building, sustainability, and breakdown in the Middle East.
I have studied military intervention in domestic politics in the form of coups d'état, as well as loyalty and insubordination of military personnel in crisis situations, particularly in the context of the Syrian civil war. Moreover, I am interested in the emergence, maintenance, and breakdown of authoritarian regimes. Using a combination of qualitative and quantitative data, I have studied the processes of inclusion and exclusion that undergird authoritarian rule, as well as international sources of authoritarian regime stability. Most recently I have begun to study the sources of political support for the military in Egypt, both on the level of public opinion and in terms of the emergence of pro-military actors in the formal political arena.
I have conducted field research in Egypt, Tunisia, the Turkish-Syrian border region, and Yemen, and my work has appeared in journals such as Comparative Political Studies, Comparative Politics, International Political Science Review, and Democratization.