Research Faculty & Staff

  • Phil Dufty
    Phil Dufty Acting Deputy Director General and Director of Research and Analysis View More

    Phil Dufty

    Acting Deputy Director General and Director of Research and Analysis

    Phil Dufty is Acting Deputy Director General and Director of Research and Analysis at the Emirates Diplomatic Academy (EDA), Abu Dhabi. He has extensive experience working with a variety of governments on both international and domestic policy matters.

    Working closely with government leaders, he has taken on a wide range of roles, including Chief of Staff, Senior Advisor and Consultant for governments in Asia, the Middle East and Europe. He worked in the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MoFAIC) as a senior advisor, and previously in the UK’s Cabinet Office, Treasury (Finance Ministry) and Department of Energy and Climate Change.

    Prior to joining the EDA, he led a project in East Asia for Tony Blair Associates. He has also conducted short-term assignments as an external expert with the International Monetary Fund, advising the Portuguese and Greek governments.

    Phil Duffy was a Kennedy Scholar at Harvard University and earned his Master’s in Anthropology and Development Studies from the London School of Economics, UK.

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    Dr Victor Gervais

    Senior Research Fellow

    Dr. Victor Gervais is a Senior Research Fellow at the Emirates Diplomatic Academy (EDA), Abu Dhabi. As a part of the EDA’s MENA Peace and Security Programme, he specialises in Middle Eastern regional security affairs, with a particular focus on Iraq, Iran and the Arab Gulf States.

    Prior to joining EDA, Dr. Gervais was assistant professor at the Institute of International and Civil Security at Khalifa University and visiting researcher at the Emirates Center for Strategic Studies and Research (ECSSR), Abu Dhabi. He also worked as a researcher for the Kuwait Program at Sciences Po and as a post-doctoral fellow at the Institut de Recherche Stratégique de l’Ecole Militaire in Paris.

    He received his PhD in 2011 from Sciences Po. His doctoral thesis focused on the development of the UAE armed forces, in relation to Abu Dhabi’s state-building strategies. His publications range from academic books, book chapters and peer-reviewed articles to policy briefs and reports.

    He is also the co-editor of the recently published book “ Stabilising the Contemporary Middle East and North Africa: Regional Actors and New Approaches ” (Palgrave, 2019).

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    Dr N. Janardhan

    Senior Research Fellow

    Dr N. Janardhan is Senior Research Fellow, Asia Programme, at the Emirates Diplomatic Academy. With over 20 years of regional expertise, he analyzes and unravels the evolving multi-dimensional partnerships between the countries of the Gulf and Asia. His broad-based interests span politics, international relations, media, migration and human trafficking in the Gulf. 

    His academic publications include – ‘A New Gulf Security Architecture: Prospects and Challenges for an Asian Role’ (ed., Gerlach, 2014); ‘India and the Gulf: What Next?’ (ed., Gulf Research Center Cambridge, 2013); and ‘Boom amid Gloom: Spirit of Possibility in the 21st Century Gulf’ (Ithaca, 2011).

    Dr Janardhan is also Honorary Fellow, University of Exeter, and Managing Assistant Editor of the ‘Journal of Arabian Studies’ (Routledge).

    In his previous stints, he has served as a political analyst in government and private institutions in the United Arab Emirates – the Ministry of State for Federal National Council Affairs, the Gulf Research Center and ‘The Gulf Today’.

    With a PhD from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, Dr Janardhan is a frequent speaker at conferences and contributes regularly to various media outlets.

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  • Sara Kazim
    Sara Kazim Research and Analysis Supervisor View More

    Sara Kazim

    Research and Analysis Supervisor

    Sara Kazim is Research and Analysis Supervisor at the Emirates Diplomatic Academy, responsible for the coordination of the Department’s activities and external stakeholder relations. She also regularly contributes to EDA’s research activities.   

    Previously, she worked as Research Assistant at United Arab Emirates University (UAEU) with a focus on topics related to Emirati identity and society.

    She graduated with a BA in Political Science from UAEU.

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    Zakareya M. Salman


    Zakareya M. Salman is Translator at the Emirates Diplomatic Academy. He translates all publications of the Research and Analysis Department as well as EDA-wide communications with stakeholders from English to Arabic and vice versa.

    Mr Salman has 10 years of experience in translation and interpreting, and is a member of several professional translation associations.

    Before joining EDA, Mr Salman worked at the General Headquarters of the UAE Armed Forces, including acting as an interpreter for the Director of Training and interpreting at high-level meetings. During this time, he translated and edited several books on military training and professional development.

    Mr Salman has a bachelor’s degree in English Language and Literature from the Faculty of Modern Languages and Translation at Ain Shams University in Egypt, and is currently pursuing a degree in law.

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  • Ulrik Birk-Petersen
    Ulrik Birk-Petersen Senior Research Fellow View More

    Ulrik Birk-Petersen

    Senior Research Fellow

    Ulrik Birk-Petersen is a Senior Research Fellow at the Emirates Diplomatic Academy (EDA), where he leads the Academy’s 21st Century Diplomacy Programme. The programme examines diplomatic best practices as well as skills, competencies and training required by a new generation of diplomats.

    Prior to joining EDA, Ulrik Birk-Petersen worked as a management consultant for McKinsey & Co. in Dubai. Before joining McKinsey, he worked as a diplomat with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark in different roles, including a posting to the Royal Danish Embassy in Moscow. Prior to joining the Danish Foreign Service, Ulrik Birk-Petersen served with the World Bank in Washington, DC, and with the European Union in West Africa.

    While pursuing his studies in Copenhagen, he worked as political secretary to a party leader in the Danish Parliament. His experience also includes working as a researcher with the Brookings Institution in Washington, DC.

    Ulrik Birk-Petersen was a Crown Prince Frederik Scholar at the Harvard Kennedy School from where he graduated with a Master in Public Administration. He received his BA in Political Science from the University of Copenhagen.

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