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Research Case Studies

The Programme has an important, dynamic and lasting effect on decision making with respect to governance and the security of nations worldwide.


Influencing UK Policy

Prof. Anoush Ehteshami was a speaker at the UK Parliament's Defence Committee and Foreign Affairs Committee on the UK policy in Syria, on Thursday 8 October 2015.

Watch the full video

Influencing European Strategy

The programme had an impact in influencing EU-Iran Relations after the Nuclear Deal in 2016.

Steven Blockmans, Anoushiravan Ehteshami and Gawdat Bahgat make recommendations for the EU for a strategy for relations with Iran.

One Belt, One Road

One Belt One Road Conference

The ‘One Belt One Road’ Conference, organised by the al Sabah Programme and Centre for Contemporary Chinese Studies, attracted significant Chinese TV coverage. It took place from Tuesday 21 March – Wednesday 22 March 2017.

Tuesday 21st March, Panel 1: 'One Belt One Road and China's Westward Pivot'

Welcome Address
Professor Thomas Allen (Durham University Law School, Master of Grey College)

China in Greater Asia: Imagination, interaction and influence
Professor Anoush Ehteshami (Professor of International Relations, Al-Sabah Programme Chair, Director of the Institute for Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies, School of government and International Affairs, Durham University)

China’s Emergence as the Gulf’s Leading Trade Partner: Developing Opportunities and Possible Constraints for the Gulf Cooperation Council
Professor Timothy Niblock (Professor of Middle Eastern Studies, Exeter University)

China and the Changing Security Environment in South Asia
Dr Lars Erslev Andersen (Senior Researcher, Danish Institute of International Studies)

China’s Economic Diplomacy in Conflict Regions
Dr Yang Jiang (Senior Researcher, Danish Institute of International Studies)

Wednesday 22nd March, Panel 2: 'The Silk Roads and Social and Historical Contexts of OBOR'

Professor Robin Skeates (Durham University, Head of Department Archaeology)

On the Silk Roads before Zhang Qian’s Envoy to Western Region
Professor Lin Meicun (Professor of Silk Road Archaeology, School of Archaeology and Museology, Peking University) and translated by Mr Faruk Mardan

Chinese Ceramics Trade along the Silk Roads and its Cultural Impact on the World Civilizations
Professor Fang Lili (Director, Institute of Art Anthropology, China Academy of Arts, Chairman, China Society for Anthropology of Art)

Communications of Ancient China to the West: Archaeological Evidence on the Chinese Imperial Porcelain Relics
Dr Zhang Ran (Researcher, Department of Archaeology, Durham University)

Inscribing and Expanding the Silk Roads: From UNESCO to OBOR
Dr Susan Whitfield (Director, International Dunhuang Project, the British Library)