Dr. Emman El-Badawy is Director at the Tony Blair Institute (TBI) for Global Change and leads the Institute’s policy division on security and geopolitics. In this role she oversees the strategy and delivery of the Institute’s work on extremism and terrorism, conflict and insecurity with teams on Middle East, Africa, Central and South Asia. Dr. El-Badawy is also a fellow of the British Academy and of the Department of War Studies at King’s College London. Her three-year research, funded by the British Academy and in collaboration with King’s College London’s Professor John Bew, is a comparative study of violent and ‘non-violent’ Islamist media and disinformation with a view to informing the UK’s Counter-terrorism strategy, known as CONTEST. Dr. El-Badawy has specialised in global Islamist terrorist networks and movements for the past 11 years. She also writes and advises on social, political and geopolitical trends of the Middle East and she has built and led an interdisciplinary, global team of experts to inform TBI’s broad range of clients and stakeholders.
Before her role at the Institute, Dr. El-Badawy lectured on political Islam and was a consultant on counter-extremism and religious violence. She reviewed programmes and counter-extremism interventions for multinational agencies and provided internal training for various governments on extremist narratives and ideologies. Prior to that, she was a senior analyst at the Centre on Religion & Geopolitics, part of the Tony Blair Faith Foundation.
Dr. El-Badawy has been a BBC expert voice on the Middle East, Islamism and terrorism since 2014 and provides commentary for various media outlets on unfolding events. She contributes regularly to, and her research has been featured on international media, including Sky News, BBC News, Channel 4, ITV News and Al Jazeera. She has served as an expert advisor for the UK government’s Commission for Countering Extremism in 2018, and continues to serve on advisory committees, including as an academic advisor to the UK’s counter-terrorism police force. Dr. El-Badawy holds a PhD in Arab and Islamic studies from the University of Exeter.