Ten years ago, Tunisian street vendor Mohamed Bouazizi stood in the middle of traffic, shouted “How do you expect me to make a living?” and set himself on fire, catalyzing popular protests in Tunisia and across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), and creating a lens through which advocates, scholars, and policymakers understand the region until today. Protesters took to the streets to demand freedom, economic justice, and accountability; political activists put forth proposals for reform and institutional change; civil society convened to bring about action; and journalists documented the events as they unfolded. Ten years later, we see a region that tells a complicated narrative: one of agency, openings, and resilience; yet also, one of repression, civil war, and mass atrocity.

The story of organizing in the MENA region did not begin and will not end with the “Arab Spring.” And so, in a commitment to share and learn from the lived experiences of those presenting alternate visions to decades of status quo, TIMEP is pleased to put forth “Ten Years On: Organizing in the MENA Region,” a project that will provide a platform for those who have organized, are organizing, and will organize in the region. Through “Ten Years On,” and in collaboration with its fellows, partners, and network, TIMEP will host interactive, audiovisual, and written content that unpacks how organizing has evolved; how governments and non-state actors have responded; and where we find ourselves today. In doing so, “Ten Years On,” will look into three spaces in which these contestations have unfolded: on the ground, in cyberspace, and in exile.


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Syrians used to say “walls have ears” to warn someone that they crossed a red line…

January 1, 1970
Organizing in Syria: Legislative Fact Sheet
March 26, 2021

A fact sheet by TIMEP's Legal Unit explores how the Syrian regime has used the law…

February 25, 2021
Ten Years On: Contesting Cyberspace in MENA
February 25, 2021

TIMEP hosted “Ten Years On: Contesting Cyberspace in MENA,” a timely virtual discussion on social media,…

On the Ground

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There is no doubt that the Arab Spring revolutions have greatly contributed to the formation of…

I started my career in journalism seventeen years ago. In a series of unplanned incidents, I…

January 1, 1970
Lawyering for Change
April 30, 2021

In Lawyering for Change, TIMEP’s Legal Unit conducts a series of interviews with lawyers, legal practitioners,…


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On April 1, 2021, join TIMEP for a timely virtual discussion on organizing in diaspora and…

January 1, 1970
Ten Years On: Egyptians in Exile
March 9, 2021

In a series of short video interviews, TIMEP speaks to four Egyptians living in exile as…