Daniela Huber
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‘In between’ the academic and policy communities
The position(ality) of think tank(er)s in knowledge production in and on the Middle East and Europe
in Knowledge production in higher education
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Situated between the academic and policy communities, think tanks are also engaged in knowledge production on Europe and the Middle East that influences how these geographical entities are imagined in their respective societies. The politics of knowledge production of think tanks is conditioned by several factors: one is the democratic/autocratic context whereby a rising autocratic trend in the Middle East and Europe directly weighs on the work of think tanks. Furthermore, privately funded think tanks live in a tough and competitive funding environment which influences the topics they research. Finally, larger structures of occlusion and exclusion/inclusion reveal a European ‘gaze’ towards the Arab world, but not vice versa. This contribution elaborates on how these factors, in particular the tough competition for funding, affect researchers working in think tanks. Reflecting on the emancipatory potential think tanks and associated researchers can have in this context, the chapter concludes that think tanks should not only see themselves as situated between the academic and policy communities, but should also start to work more closely with marginalised communities.

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Knowledge production in higher education

Between Europe and the Middle East


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