The politics of the Middle East and North Africa


Anderson’s professional experience spans continents and academic institutions. Most recently, she served as the President of the American University in Cairo (AUC) from 2011 to 2016 and as Provost from 2008 to 2010.  Prior to her work in Egypt, she served as dean of the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University from 1996 to 2008, and as the James T. Shotwell Professor of International Relations. She previously served as chair of the University’s political science department and director of the Middle East Institute.

Before joining Columbia, she was an assistant professor of government and social studies at Harvard University. She published extensively during her career. Some notable works include Pursuing Truth, Exercising Power: Social Science and Public Policy in the Twenty-first Century (Columbia University Press, 2003) and The State and Social Transformation in Tunisia and Libya, 1820-1980 (Princeton University Press, 1986).


Anderson holds a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College, an M.A. in law and diplomacy from the Fletcher School at Tufts University, and a Ph.D. in political science from Columbia University. She was awarded an honorary doctor of laws from Monmouth University in 2002.




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