Category: Research Projects

Research Projects

Lebanon’s Non-State Actors and State Authorities: The grass-roots of the October 17 Revolution

A revolution to topple the dominant political elite in Lebanon has just united the Lebanese people. Given the relative ineffectiveness of urban social movements during the past years, how was this unity possible within a leaderless revolution?

Drawing on the findings of the Public Authorities and Legitimacy Making project (PALM), this blog sheds light on the way understanding public authorities could give way to understanding the October 17 revolution events in Lebanon, and roots it in the dynamics of legitimacy making practices of state and non-state public authorities.

The blog claims that structured practices belonging to state and non-state authorities in Lebanon shaped a recent history that led to the creation of popular affinities around universal values, and reconstituted citizens’ perception of state authority, leading to the unique condition in which the Lebanese were able to stand united for change against growingly unpopular traditional state authorities.

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developmentResearch Projects


Project: “Public Authority and Legitimacy Making (PALM): host-refugee relations in urban Jordan and Lebanon”


This project entitled Public Authority and Legitimacy Making (PALM) is part of and seeks to contribute to a research programme on “Security & Rule of Law (SRoL), and is funded by NWO-WOTRO (the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research | WOTRO Science for Global Development).

The Public Authorities and Legitimacy-Making (PALM) project will use mixed methods approaches to understand what everyday practices bestow legitimacy on state and non-state actors attempting to exercise public authority in the most fragile urban settings in Lebanon and Jordan.

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Research Projects


Since the beginning of the civil war, more than 1 million Syrians have fled to Lebanon, many of these refugees now live in cities and this is placing substantial burdens on already pressured systems of public services in a context of weak governance. One urban area with a large number of refugees is Nab’aa on the fringes of Beirut. With over 60% of its population now Syrian, the pressures are mounting on the built environment services and the ability of the authorities to ensure security.

This film was made by residents in the area, looking at new ways of living together and building a shared community with tolerance in spite of the considerable challenges.

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Research Projects


Wellbeing and Protracted Urban Displacement: Refugees and Hosts in Jordan and Lebanon

te Lintelo, D.J.H., Lakshman, R., Mansour, W., Soye, E., Ficcarelli, T. and Woodward, W.
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The war in Syria, now in its eighth year, has led to the mass exodus of the Syrian people. Lebanon and Jordan have achieved a remarkable feat by hosting millions of refugees, with many having located to urban areas, where the great majority of local populations are already situated.

supported by NWO-WOTRO, through the Security and Rule of Law inFragile and Conflict-Affected Settings research programme, this research project explored the way border regimes, registration and residency, housing and economic participation influence the wellbeing of host and refugee communities in Lebanon and Jordan.

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