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Iraq's Investment Spending Deficit: An Analysis of Chronic Failures

The proposed 2019 budget law brought into sharp focus systemic failures in the crafting of successive Iraqi governments’ economic policy since 2003. For years, the structural imbalance between current and investment expenditure has undermined the Iraqi economy and is the primary reason why the country is vulnerable to external shocks - especially to shifts in the global price of oil. This year’s proposed budget perpetuates the same flaws. The lack of investment spending, particularly...

Security and Governance in the Disputed Territories Under a Fractured GOI: The Case of Northern Diyala

Originally published in the LSE Middle East Centre blog by IRIS Research Fellow Zmkan Ali Saleem, IRIS Director of Research and Policy, Mac Skelton, and IRIS Director Christine van den Toorn in November 2018. This blogpost is part of the LSE research project Public Authority and Iraq’s Disputed Territories led by Christine van den Toorn, examining the territorial dispute between the Government of Iraq...

The 2018 Iraqi Federal Elections: A Population in Transition?

IRIS's second report in the three-part election series, "The 2018 Iraqi Federal Elections: A Population in Transition?" evaluates the low turnout, unexpected wins and losses of competing coalitions, allegations of fraud, and implications for government formation. This report reinforces many of the predications of the first report, " Iraq Votes 2018: Election Mobilization Strategies ," and concludes that the lack of trust in Iraqi political parties not only contributed to low voter turnout,...

Iraq Votes 2018: Election Mobilization Strategies

This report — the first in a three-part series dedicated to pre- and post-election developments and government formation — evaluates the trends in electoral mobilization strategies and similarities between and digressions from those of previous elections. The report concludes that while many candidates reflected those of previous elections, growing disaffection with political elites and rise of a protest movement prompted a shift from traditional ethno-sectarian narratives and identity politics to issue-based campaigns utilizing language...

IRIS Supports Civic Education with the Independent High Electoral Commission

On Thursday April 5, IRIS hosted a presentation and roundtable led by the Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC) in Sulaymaniyah at AUIS. The goal was to educate voters, provide information about the new electronic voting system, and encourage citizen participation in the electoral processes in Kurdistan Region and Iraq.

Hawre Tofeq, Director of IHEC Sulaymaniyah, gave a thirty-minute presentation, then opened the floor to the audience to ask the IHEC questions about the upcoming...

Toward Economic Recovery and Food Security in Post-DAESH Iraq: A Framework for Governance Moving Forward

Conflict drives farmers from their land, disrupts economic activities, and prevents people from access to markets. It threatens food security by harming domestic agricultural production, damaging food markets, and hindering people’s access to income. In Iraq, the recent war against DAESH has resulted in massive food insecurity, and profoundly affected the country's food system. This report describes current food insecurity in multiple post-DAESH towns in Iraq through the lens of economic recovery. It shows that...

IRIS Hosts U.S. Consul General in Erbil, Ken Gross

On November 28, 2017, IRIS hosted the United States Consul General in Erbil, Ken Gross, at an event titled “Charting a Path Forward for the Kurdistan Region and Iraq” to discuss U.S., regional and local policies in the aftermath of the referendum and the war against ISIS. Consul General Gross spoke on a panel with AUIS professors, Drs. Akeel Abbas, Alan Noory, and Barin Kayaoglu, moderated by IRIS Director Christine van den Toorn.

Dr....