The stronger the competing Islamist terrorist militias of IS and the Nusra Front become, and the more brutal Syria's civil war gets, the easier it is for the Syrian regime to portray itself as the sole force capable of protecting the country's civilians.

Latest Publication

Architectural standards recreate gender, racial and class hierarchies, just as local cultural productions reinforce specific notions of women-as-space.

Statehood & Participation

Please join the artists behind TIMEBOX on a walking tour of the 10 TIMEBOXes around Beirut. 

June 6, 2015
Starting at Saifi Village Ferrari showroom
TIMEBOX is running through October 1st, 2015

TIMEBOX Beirut is an installation by Razan AlSalah and Lotfi AlSalah, produced in cooperation with Heinrich Böll Stiftung - Middle East


The Lebanese Penal Code invokes “nature” in order to justify the persecution of homosexuality. Indeed, nature seems to have an undeniable authority. In Beirut, civil society actors now questioned this paradigm and launched an international and pluri-disciplinary inquiry on the multiple facets of the concept of nature.


Environmental Justice

Ferrybridge at Dawn

Let us imagine for a moment that we could change the world according to our wishes. Dramatic economic inequality gives way to social and political inclusion. Universal human rights become a reality. We end deforestation and the destruction of arable land. Fish stocks recover. Two billion people look forward to a life without poverty, hunger, and violence.

The ecological Shop of Organic Products

Some seek to establish tradable prices for ecosystem services, claiming that markets can achieve what politics has not. However, such an approach collapses nature’s complex functions into a set of commodities stripped from their social, cultural, and ecological context and can pose a threat to the poor and indigenous communities who depend on the land for their livelihood.


Conflict & International Politics


Though it might seem as if Druze are in a position in which they have no good options, some of their options could prove, in the long-term, to be better than others.


The conflict dynamics and development in Syria are strongly determined by the different groups' access to certain areas. Some have been able to turn problems into opportunities.


Culture & Dialogue

Sagesse Street in Achrafieh, Beirut

Peaceful La Sagesse Street is about to experience an uproar the like of which it has never known before as the Beirut city authorities renewed the La Sagesse-Al Turk highway project. What is this project aiming to and why it provoked outrage and mobilized the forces of civil society?



What does it mean that the Union Building — one of city’s most prominent, if not the most prominent, modernist landmarks — is currently under threat of demolition? What does it mean that this vulgar investment culture also threatens the nearby Arida building? Anyone who has heard of the architectural pioneers responsible for these two buildings, will understand all too well how disastrous things have become.



The Non-Exotic Erotic: Questions of Desire and Representation

Grid image Apply here

We are pleased to invite submissions for the second issue of Kohl: a Journal for Body and Gender Research , slated for publication in December 2015. Young activists, independent researchers, graduate students and fresh graduates are particularly encouraged to apply. We also welcome submissions from seminal contributors in the field.

The deadline for submission has been extended to August 2, 2015. This issue is in cooperation with Heinrich Böll Stiftung Middle East

Coming soon: Rafat Alzakout's film "HOME", done in cooperation with Heinrich Boell Foundation Middle East.

Watch the trailer!

In the midst of the Syrian turmoil, the joint passion for arts and theater leads Rafat, the director of this film exiled in Beirut, to a trip to North Syria with a group of young hopeful friends around the ballet dancer Ahmed, army deserter Mohammed and Taj. Despite the difficult circumstances and the conservative society in their hometown Manbij, the young men use the new fragile freedom to realize their dream and create a creative space they call “Home”.

At “Home”, they exchange their hopes, reveries and fears, and a bond of friendship develops between the group and Rafat who himself searches for his home country. But in the light of the random shelling by Syrian aircraft and the impending rise of ISIS, they find their dreams shattered and their hopes for a different country giving eventually place to disillusionment.

New Office

Heinrich Boell Stiftung - Middle East office moved to a new location, to contact us, please call:

“The Speaker of the House and the Bureau of the Parliament remind you, the parliamentarians, that the floor is now open for amendments”, - sounds of rustling paper resonate in the auditorium of Haigazian University. On this Sunday morning, the air is humming with concentrated whisper as well dressed youth deliberates on modifications for law proposals. 32 young parliamentarians from Tyr, Saida, Tripoli, Mount Lebanon and Beirut convened in Beirut on March 22nd to simulate a plenary session of the Lebanese National Assembly. For two months, the students aged between 15 and 18 years, dedicated their Saturdays to prepare themselves and their draft laws for this day’s plenary session.

Who tolerates whom? Who is "we" and who are "the others"? How private or public can/must love be lived? A Cinematic Intervention by director Angelina Maccarone and writer Carolin Emcke on equal rights for LGBTI.

Guidelines For Contributors

Heinrich Boll Foundation Middle East Office welcomes articles to be published on its website www.lb.boell.org. We consider unsolicited original submissions on arts, culture, politics, social and environmental affairs in Lebanon, Syria and Iraq or addressing issues related to the Arab World. Articles should be rigorous written in language accessible to the educated general reader interested in the region. Queries should be directed to info@lb.boell.org

There needs to be a clear concept for the article, pointing out the question the article tries to answer. Articles need to be in line with hbs values and publication ethics. more


Heinrich Boll Middle East and North Africa Office, Beirut does not offer scholarships. Please send your applications to the HBS foundation website

All rights reserved.

Perspectives - Political Analysis and Commentary from the Middle East is a publication series of the Heinrich Böll Stiftung’s offices in Beirut and Ramallah that seeks to provide a platform for presenting analysis and viewpoints of experts from the region.

Perspectives issue 7 Cover - illustration by Mazen Kerbaj

Rumour has it ... the new Perspectives is out!

They are only 'hot air' but anyone who has been affected by rumours is familiar with their unhallowed dynamics, and the serious consequences they can entail. Rumours fulfil social functions. They serve as a medium through which unfulfilled hopes or unspecific fears can be voiced. They bond and drive a wedge between people and population groups at the same time. They can destroy reputations, credibility and even lives. Read here twelve experts from the MENA region discussing the topic!