Aurora Sottimano holds a Laurea degree in Oriental Studies from the University of Turin (Italy); pursued a second Laurea in International Political Science from the same university; and has submitted a thesis titled “Economic discourse in Ba’thist Syria: continuities and changing strategies” to the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London, for a doctorate in Politics funded by the British Academy. She has over twenty years experience in administration and management in the Italian Ministry of Justice, and has attained a solid expertise in International Relations, Comparative Politics, and Political Economy acquired while pursuing her doctoral programme and conducting research in the UK, Syria, Iraq, France, and Italy. Her research focuses on Syria and Middle East politics; the political economy of development and liberalization; and authoritarianism, for which she draws on the literature on governmentality centred around the thought of Michel Foucault. Her publications include Changing Regime Discourse in Syria, St Andrews Papers in Contemporary Syria, Lynne Rienner 2008, with Kjetil Sevik; and “The politics of economic reform in Asad’s Syria”, in Journal of Mediterranean Studies, Vol. 14, No. 1/2, 2004.