Haian Dukhan

Haian Dukhan


E-mail: dukhan.sy@gmail.com






I am a post-doctoral research fellow at the Central European University/Centre for Religious Studies and an associate Research Fellow at the University of St Andrews/Centre for Syrian Studies. My research interests revolve around issues of identity and political violence with a specific focus on tribal communities in relation to the Syrian and the Iraqi state.


Current Projects




State and Tribes in Syria: Informal Alliances and Conflict Patterns (Routledge, 2019)


Peer-reviewed articles

“A Thematic Analysis of Vocal Hymns (Nasheeds) by the So-Called Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS)”, Journal for Intelligence, Propaganda and Security Studies, 2017, Vol 11, No 1, pp.143-152 (Co-authored with Moutaz Al-Kheder).

“Tribes and Tribalism in the Syrian Uprising”, Syria Studies Journal, 2014, Vol 6, No 2, pp. 1-28.

“Development-Induced Displacement among Syria’s Bedouin”, Nomadic Peoples Journal, 2014, Vol 18, No 1, pp.61-79.


Book Chapters

“From Reform to Revolt, Bashar al-Assad and the Arab Tribes in Syria”, a book chapter in Pastoralist Livelihoods in Asian Drylands: Environment, Governance and Risk, (2016), White Horse Press.

Submitted for Publication (Under Review)

“Sectarian mobilisation in Deir Ezzor during the Syrian Civil War”.

“The multi dynamics of sectarianism: how the Christian community of the Syrian governorate of al-Hassakeh responded to their security dilemmas”

“The Struggle for Syria: Tribes at War”, a chapter in the Routledge series on the Syrian Uprisings (Volume 3).

Policy Reports

Local Approaches to IDP Return and Reintegration of Internally Displaced in Deir Ez-zur and al-Hasakah, Northeast Syria, with other team members from Integrity Global for USAID, (2020).

Political Economy of Value Chains in Southern Syria. Tribal & Armed Group Influence on Dairy, Cattle Feed and Olive Oil Value Chains, with other team members from Integrity Global for USAID, (2017).

In preparation

I am currently involved in a collaborative research project at the University of Oxford titled: “Societal belonging in Syria: Meaning and boundaries of the Syrian “we”.


Short articles for research centres and media outlets

A trilogy of a Tragedy: the Burning of Palmyra Oasis, Aleppo Project, Central European University, Budapest, 2020

Tribal Sponsorships Help Syrian Families Out of ISIS Camps, But Challenges Remain, Chatham House, 2019

Pro-regime Militias and ISIS Militants Stand Against the Return of Palmyra’s People, Chatham House, 2019

Arab gripes pose challenges for Syrian Kurds’ control, Oxford Analytica, 2019

Syria: attempts by Saudi Arabia, Iran and Turkey to co-opt Arab tribes will deepen the country’s divisions, The Conversation, 2019.

Critical analysis of attempts to co-opt the tribes in Syria, London School of Economics, Middle East Centre, 2018.

“Rivals Will Use Tribes to Destablise Syria’s Raqqa”, Oxford Analytica, 2018.

“The Syrian Civil War: What role do tribal loyalties play?”, London School of Economics, Middle East Centre, 2018.

“Who are the Tadamera? Modern Life Among the Ruins of Palmyra”, Bergen University, 2017.

“The Islamic State: Balancing the Islamic and the Tribal Identity”, The International Academic Forum, 2015.

“Tribes and the Islamists in Modern Syria: A Short Introduction”, Centre for Syrian Studies, University of St Andrews, 2014.

“The Islamic State and the Arab Tribes in Eastern Syria”, E-International Relations, 2014.

“Syria’s Security Implications for Israel: Advantage of a Stalemate”, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 2013.

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