Center for Arab and Islamic Studies

Institute of Oriental Studies RAS


Research work at the Center is carried out mainly in seven areas:

  • Models of historical development of Arab societies 
  • Intellectual History of Islam 
  • MENA religions and societies in the history and modern times
  • Social and economic development of Arab societies
  • Political institutions and systems of Arab world 
  • International relations in the MENA region and Russia’s policy 
  • Arabian Ethnoculture and Linguistics 
  • Track II diplomacy 

CAIS structure, forms of work and presentation of results

The research activities of the Center's staff include both individual work and work within small scientific groups.

Intermediate results of the work of the Center's staff are presented at methodological seminars, in which both employees of the Institute of Oriental Studies and colleagues from other scientific institutions, as well as graduate students and students of Moscow universities are invited to participate. On average, the Center conducts about two dozen such seminars annually.

The research results are reflected in individual and collective monographs, articles, analytical reports on the most current issues of regional development . Some publications are carried out jointly with other institutes of the Russian Academy of Sciences, the Russian International Affairs Council, the Valdai International Discussion Club and other expert and analytical centers.

Each year, CAIS publishes more than ten monographs and about a hundred academic articles.

Of great value is the works published by CAIS employees with the results of field research conducted by them in the countries of the region under study: Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Yemen, Bahrain, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, Egypt, etc. A complex expedition has been working in Yemen for several decades.

Field Research Field Research


The work of the Center is not limited to publications and field research.

One of the most actively developing formats has become the holding of numerous scientific events - international, Russian and inter-institutional conferences, round tables, scientific seminars and presentations.

The largest of them is the annual Conference of Arabists “I.M. Smilyanskaya Readings”, which is attended by scientists from two dozen countries and from all major domestic centers of Oriental studies. As a result of the conference, several collective monographs are published every year.

In addition, CAIS is a partner of the Valdai International Discussion Club in organizing the annual Middle East Dialogue; co-organizer of the International Forum "Islam in a Multicultural World", the All-Russian Scientific and Practical Conference of Young Scientists "Comprehension of the East" and others.

Along with research activities, CAIS has significant experience in the field of so-called second track diplomacy. It was CAIS employees who organized three rounds of inter-Palestinian consultations (2011, 2016, 2019), two rounds of inter-Syrian consultations in 2015, the regularly held Dartmouth Conference, etc.

Along with scientific activities, CAIS employees are also engaged in teaching at the country's leading universities (Moscow State University, GAUGN, RUDN University, Higher School of Economics) and actively interact with government agencies (the Security Council of the Russian Federation, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation).

CAIS staff includes RIAC experts, members of the Valdai International Discussion Club, the Russia-Islamic World Strategic Vision Group, members of dissertation councils and editorial boards of leading scientific publications.

External ties (Russia) External ties (Russia)