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Small states with a big role : Qatar and the United Arab Emirates in the wake of the Arab Spring.

Ulrichsen, Kristian Coates (2012) 'Small states with a big role : Qatar and the United Arab Emirates in the wake of the Arab Spring.', Discussion Paper. Durham University, HH Sheikh Nasser Al-Sabah Programme, Durham.


The international military intervention in Libya in March 2011 dramatically exposed the new contours of power and influence in the Middle East regional system. At a time of regional upheaval, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) appeared to be outposts of stability and prosperity, even as the protests reached neighbouring Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states. Their ostensible calm reinforced both countries’ ambitious state-branding strategies and imbued ruling elites in Doha and Abu Dhabi with the confidence to lead the Arab response to Libya. This was consistent with their leaderships’ visions of Qatar and the UAE as regional powers with a truly international reach. Moreover, it came just three months after the surprise awarding of the 2022 FIFA soccer World Cup symbolised the Gulf States’ arrival as global actors. This paper will critically examine the prominent rise of Qatar and the UAE in a region in transition.

Item Type:Monograph (Discussion Paper)
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Date accepted:No date available
Date deposited:09 October 2012
Date of first online publication:No date available
Date first made open access:No date available

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