Dr Afshin Shahi

PositionSenior Lecturer in International Relations & Middle East Politics and Director of Undergraduate Studies
Department or DivisionPeace Studies
TelephonePeace Studies and International Development

Research Interests (key words only)

Middle East politics & security, political Islam and religious sectarianism

PhD Supervision

  • Victoria Araj
  • Hossain Mehrabinejad
  • Ikutaro Morita
  • Ilham Shabari 

Teaching and Supervisory Responsibilities

  • Framing the Middle East (MA) 
  • Political Violence and Terrorism (MA)
  • Regional Politics (Level 2)
  • Democracy and Authoritarianism (Level 3)
  • Political Systems, Theories and Ideologies (Level 1) 

Study History

  • Qualification in Higher Education Teaching, Durham University
  • PhD Politics, Durham University
  • MA International Relations, Durham University
  • BSc International Relations, University of Wales/ Aberystwyth


Professional History

  • 2016- Present Senior Lecturer in International Relations and the Middle East Politics, University of Bradford, Division of Peace Studies
  • 2013– 2016 Lecturer in International Relations and the Middle East Politics, University of Bradford, Division of Peace Studies
  • 2012– 2013 Lecturer in International Relations and the Middle East Politics, University of Exeter, Department of Politics
  • 2012-2013 Co-ordinator of International Relations: Security, Conflict, and Peace Pathway, International Summer School, University of Exeter
  • 2010 – 2012 Tutor in International Relations, Durham University, School of Government and International Affairs
  • 2009 – 2012 Residential tutor, Durham University, St. Aidan’s College



  • Afshin Shahi, The Politics of Truth Management in Saudi Arabia’ (Routledge, 2013)
  • Afshin Shahi & Ehsan Abdoh-Tabrizi, Iran, the Shia State and the Sunni Minority ( Forthcoming)

Peer reviewed papers:

  • Afshin Shahi & Alam Saleh, ‘Andalusiasation: Is Iran on the Trajectory of De-Islamisation?’ British Journal of Middle East Studies, Volume 42, Issue 4, 2015
  • Afshin Shahi & Hesam Forozan, ‘Securitisation of the Domestic Sphere: the Rise of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps in Iran’s Economy’,  The Middle East Journal, 2017
  • Afshin Shahi  & Maya Vachkova, Ecology and the Rise of Sectarian Violence in the Middle East (under review by the British Journal of Middle East Studies)
  • Afshin Shahi, ‘The Paradoxes of Iranian Messianic Politics’, Digest of Middle East Studies, Volume 22 (Spring 2012)
  • Afshin Shahi, ‘The Islamisation of Democracy or the Democratisation of Islam?’ Journal of Middle Eastern Geopolitics (Roma). 2 (October- December 2007) 10, S.79-107
  • Afshin Shahi, ‘The Islamic Cultural Revolution and the Consolidation of the Islamic Republic’, Journal of European Society for Iranian Studies (Fall 2006) N 3 year, Volume I

In the News/Media

Afshin Shahi is a  regular contributor to the local, national and global media. In 2015 alone, he had over 130 TV, radio and press interviews with many leading outlets including BBC, France 24, Sky News, ITV News, Bloomberg Business, and The Daily Telegraph. As well as commenting on breaking news in programmes such as BBC Breakfast, BBC News at Ten, BBC News at Six, BBC News at One, BBC Radio Four PM, BBC Five Live.

He has  been invited to high profile national and global panel discussions such as ‘Inside Story’ (Al Jazeera) and ‘Beyond Belief’ (BBC Radio Four). He has also contributed to ‘File on Four’ Documentaries. He has published commentaries in outlets including Forbes, Foreign Policy and the Conversation, disseminating academic perspectives to a wider audience. One of his articles which was published in Foreign Policy magazine topped the Huffington Post's chart of 'Best World Reads Of The Week'  in 2013 and was translated into many languages reaching a global audience.    

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