The Center for Middle Eastern Studies is part of the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs at Brown. It promotes research, teaching, and public engagement on key issues of the Middle East in a historically and culturally grounded manner. Its coverage includes all time periods—from antiquity to contemporary geopolitics—and an expansive geographical imagination in which the Middle East is both a region with changing boundaries and a conceptual entity part of global discourses. The Center is aligned with the Watson Institute’s mission to encourage innovative thinking pertaining to development, security, and governance. The Center also maintains strong connections to departments in the arts, humanities, and the social sciences as well as other collaborative units at Brown, such as the Center for Language Studies (which houses instruction in Arabic, Persian, and Turkish), the Cogut Institute for the Humanities, the Brown Arts Initiative, and the Pembroke Center.

As the hub for Middle East Studies at Brown, the Center supports research and programming generated by a world renowned faculty. It houses a thriving undergraduate concentration connected to an extensive interdisciplinary curriculum that is constantly being enriched further by the arrival of new permanent and visiting faculty. The Center acts as a second intellectual and social home for a large group of graduate students spread across Brown’s departments that grant advanced degrees. Through collaboration with other units on campus, the Center furthers Brown’s work as a global university especially dedicated to seeking a just and prosperous future for all. With an extensive footprint in research, teaching, and advocacy, the Center is a major academic node in the international network of institutions dedicated to discussing a region crucial to global affairs.