Dr Gerasimos Tsourapas

Dr Gerasimos Tsourapas

Department of Political Science and International Studies
Senior Lecturer in Middle East Politics
Head of Equality, Diversity & Inclusion for the School of Government

Contact details

POLSIS - School of Government
Muirhead Tower
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Gerasimos Tsourapas is Senior Lecturer in Middle East Politics at the University of Birmingham. His research examines the politics of migration in the Middle East and the broader Global South via non-Western perspectives. He is the author of The Politics of Migration in Modern Egypt – Strategies for Regime Survival in Autocracies (Cambridge University Press, 2019) and Migration Diplomacy in the Middle East – Power, Mobility, and the State (Manchester University Press, 2020). His work has appeared in International Studies Quarterly, International Migration Review, International Political Science Review, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, and other leading journals. 

Dr Tsourapas has received numerous awards. The Politics of Migration in Modern Egypt was awarded the 2020 ENMISA Distinguished Book Award by the International Studies Association and was shortlisted for the L.H.M. Ling Outstanding First Book Prize. His work has also been recognised by the American Political Science Association (Best Dissertation on Migration & Citizenship, 2016), the International Studies Association (Martin O. Heisler Award, 2017), and the Middle East Studies Association of North America (Graduate Student Paper Prize, 2015). He also received the inaugural 2021 ENMISA Emerging Scholar Award by the International Studies Association. 

Dr Tsourapas was a Fellow at the Center for European Studies, Harvard University (2019–20) and the American University in Cairo (2013–14).


  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, 2017
  • PhD in Politics (SOAS, University of London), 2016
  • MSc in Middle East Politics (SOAS, University of London), 2012
  • MSc in International Political Economy (London School of Economics & Political Science), 2007
  • BA in Economics and Political Science (Yale University), 2006


Gerasimos Tsourapas joined the School of Government in 2016. His research has been published in leading academic journals, including International Studies Quarterly, International Political Science Review, and International Migration Review. His first book, The Politics of Migration in Modern Egypt - Strategies for Regime Survival in Autocracies (Cambridge University Press) was awarded the 2020 ENMISA Distinguished Book Award by the International Studies Association. His research has been recognised with international awards by the Middle East Studies Association (2015), the American Political Science Association (2016), and the International Studies Association (2017). His second book, Migration Diplomacy in the Middle East – Power, Mobility, and the State, will be published by Manchester University Press in 2020.

Gerasimos is part of the MAGYC Consortium funded by the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme on migration governance (2018-2022). He is also the Principal Investigator for a project on “The Rise of Transnational Authoritarianism in The Middle East,” funded by a Pilot Study Grant, Council for British Research in the Levant (2020-21).

Since 2018, Gerasimos Tsourapas has served as the School of Government Lead for Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion. He successfully led the efforts to achieve the School’s Athena SWAN institutional accreditation in 2020.

During the 2019-20 academic year, Gerasimos Tsourapas is a Visiting Scholar at the Center for European Studies, Harvard University. View his full CV.


Modules Convened at the University of Birmingham

  • ‘Migration and Refugee Politics in the Global South’ (UG, 2020–21)
  • ‘Migration Diplomacy in the Middle East’ (UG, 2018–19, 2019-20)
  • ‘International Relations of the Middle East’ (UG, 2017–18)
  • ‘Approaches to Research in Government & Society’ (PG, 2016–17, 2017–18)
  • ‘Problems of World History’ (UG 2016–17)
  • ‘Global Capitalism and Migration’ (UG 2016–17)
  • ‘International Relations Theory’ (UG 2016–17)

Teaching Recognition & Awards

  • Fellow – British Higher Education Academy (2017)
  • 2017 Outstanding Teaching Award – University of Birmingham (short-listed, 2017)
  • 2015 Director’s Teaching Prize, Graduate Teaching Assistant & Teaching Fellow Category SOAS, University of London (2015)

Postgraduate supervision

Gerasimos welcomes new doctoral research application in the areas of migration, refugee, and diaspora politics; international relations and comparative politics of the Middle East and North Africa; the politics of authoritarian regimes

Gerasimos is currently working with the following PhD candidates:

  • Wen Yu-Wu (2017–), Syrian Refugees’ Access to Education in Jordan and Lebanon (with Dr Dina Kiwan)
  • Giovanni Piazzese (2017–), The Politics of Egyptian Diaspora (with Prof Scott Lucas)
  • Francisco de Souza (2017–), South-South Coalitions in Development Cooperation (with Dr Marco Vieira)
  • Samer Libdeh (2018–), Jordanian Foreign Policy vis-a-vis the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (with Dr Asaf Siniver)

He has supervised the following PhD students to completion:

  • Ziad Abu Mustafa (2016–19), The Politics of Palestinian Disunity (with Dr Tim Haughton).


Research Projects

Gerasimos has served as a PI in a number of research projects, including:

  • Non-State Actors and Migration Diplomacy in the Middle East (ESRC Impact Acceleration Account; 2020–21)
  • The Rise of Transnational Authoritarianism in the Middle East (Council for British Research in the Levant Pilot Grant; 2020–21)
  • The International Politics of Middle East Migration: Problems, Policy, Practice (British Academy Rising Star Engagement Award; 2018–19)
  • Migration Diplomacy in the Eastern Mediterranean - Inter-State Politics of Population Mobility in the Middle East (Council for British Research in the Levant Pilot Grant; 2017–19)
  • The Politics of Forced Migration in the Mediterranean: Interstate Bargaining and Issue-Linkage in Greece and Jordan (British Academy & The Leverhulme Trust Small Research Grant; 2017–18)

Research Excellence

  • 2021 ENMISA Emerging Scholar Award by the International Studies Association. This award recognizes ‘outstanding early career scholar from any discipline who have made a significant contribution to the field of ethnicity, nationalism, or migration studies.’
  • 2020 ENMISA Distinguished Book Award by the International Studies Association. This prize recognizes the best book published over the past two years in the study of the international politics of ethnicity, nationalism or migration.
  • 2017 Outstanding Early-Career Researcher Prize - School of Government and Society, University of Birmingham. This prize is awarded annually by the School to ‘recognise the work of an outstanding early-career academic whose research has international significance and is breaking new boundaries, placing their research, and the University, at the global forefront of their discipline.’
  • 2017 Martin O. Heisler Award - International Studies Association, for a research paper entitled "Labor Migrants as Political Leverage? Population Mobility and Coercion in the Arab World.” This award, sponsored by the Ethnicity, Nationalism and Migration Section (ENMISA), recognises the best paper presented at a panel or poster session by a graduate student at the ISA Annual Convention. 
  • 2016 Best Dissertation Award - American Political Science Association, for a dissertation entitled "Trading People, Consolidating Power: Emigration and Authoritarianism in Modern Egypt.” This award, sponsored by APSA's Migration & Citizenship Section, recognises the best dissertation on migration and/or citizenship.
  • 2015 Graduate Student Paper Prize - Middle East Studies Association, for a research paper entitled "Labour Emigration and State Strength during the Arab Cold War.” This award recognises the best paper by a graduate student on any aspect of post 600 CE Middle East.

Other activities

Gerasimos Tsourapas was elected Honorary Treasurer & Trustee of the Council for British Research in the Levant in December 2019.

He is also currently serving a second, two-year term as Treasurer of the Ethnicity, Nationalism, and Migration Studies Section, International Studies Association (2019–21).

He was a Founding Member & Secretary of the Working Group on International Politics of Migration, Refugees, and Diasporas by the British International Studies Association (2015–18).



Tsourapas, G. (2020). Migration Diplomacy in the Middle East – Power, Mobility, and the State. Manchester: Manchester University Press. 

Tsourapas, G. (2019). The Politics of Migration in Modern Egypt: Strategies for Regime Survival in Autocracies. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Journal Articles

Tsourapas, G. & Zartaloudis, S. (2021). 'Leveraging the European Refugee Crisis: Forced Displacement and Bargaining in Greece's Bailout Negotiations'. JCMS: Journal of Common Market Studies. DOI: 10.1111/jcms.13211.

Freier, L.F., Micinski, N.R. & Tsourapas, G. (2021). 'Refugee Commodification: The Diffusion of Refugee Rent-Seeking in the Global South.' Third World Quarterly (forthcoming). 

Sadiq, K. & Tsourapas, G. (2021). ‘The Postcolonial Migration State.’ European Journal of International Relations 

Tsourapas, G. (2021). ‘Migration Diplomacy in the Gulf – Non-State Actors, Cross-Border Mobility, and the United Arab Emirates.’ (with Froilan T. Malit, Jr.). Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies.

Tsourapas, G. (2020). ‘Global Autocracies – Strategies of Transnational Repression, Legitimation, and Co-Optation in World Politics.’ International Studies Review. DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/isr/viaa061.

Adamson, F. B. & Tsourapas, G. (2020). ‘The Migration State in the Global South: Nationalizing, Developmental, and Neoliberal Models of Migration Management.’ International Migration Review 54(3): 853 – 882.

Tsourapas, G. (2020). 'The Long Arm of the Arab State.' Ethnic and Racial Studies 43(2): 351 – 370. 

Tsourapas, G. (2020). 'Theorizing State-Diaspora Relations in the Middle East: Authoritarian Emigration States in Comparative Perspective.' Mediterranean Politics 25(2): 135 – 159. 

Tsourapas, G. (2019). 'Migration Diplomacy in World Politics' (with Fiona B. Adamson). International Studies Perspectives 20(2): 113 – 128. 

Tsourapas, G. (2019). 'Corruption, Trust, Inclusion and Cohesion in North Africa and the Middle East' (with Roger Sapsford, Pamela Abbott, and Andrea Teti). Applied Research in Quality of Life 14(1): 1 – 21. 

Tsourapas, G. (2019). 'The Syrian Refugee Crisis and Foreign Policy Decision-Making in Jordan, Lebanon, and Turkey.' Journal of Global Security Studies 4(4): 464 – 481. 

Tsourapas, G. (2018). 'Labor Migrants as Political Leverage - Migration Interdependence & Coercion in the Mediterranean.' International Studies Quarterly 62(2): 383 – 395. 

Tsourapas, G. (2018). ‘Authoritarian Emigration States: Soft Power and Cross-Border Mobility in the Middle East.' International Political Science Review 39(3): 400 – 416.  

Tsourapas, G. (2018). ‘How Do Countries of Origin Engage Migrants and Diasporas? Multiple Actors and Comparative Perspectives' (with Maria Koinova). International Political Science Review 39(3) – 311-321. 

Tsourapas, G. (2017). 'Migration Diplomacy in the Global South: Cooperation, Coercion and Issue Linkage in Gaddafi’s Libya.' Third World Quarterly 38(10): 2367 – 2385. 

Tsourapas, G. (2017). 'The Politics of "Exit:" Emigration & Subject-Making Processes in Modern Egypt.' Journal of Middle East & North African Migration Studies 4(1): 29 – 49. 

Tsourapas, G. (2016). 'Nasser's Educators & Agitators Across al-Watan al-'Arabi: Tracing the Foreign Policy Importance of Egyptian Regional Migration, 1952-1967.' British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies 43(3): 324 – 341. 

Tsourapas, G. (2015). 'Why Do States Develop Multi-Tier Emigrant Policies? Evidence from Egypt,' Journal of Ethnic & Migration Studies 41(13): 2192 – 2214. 

Tsourapas, G. (2013). 'The Limits of Norm Promotion: The EU in Egypt and Israel/Palestine.' (with Elena Lazarou and Maria Gianniou) Insight Turkey 15(2): 171 – 193. 

Tsourapas, G. (2013). 'The Other Side of a Neoliberal Miracle: Economic Reform and Political De-Liberalisation in Ben Ali's Tunisia.' Mediterranean Politics 18(1): 23 – 41. 

Book Reviews

Tsourapas, G. (2016). 'A Review of Hero of the Crossing: How Anwar Sadat and the 1973 War Changed the World. By Thomas W. Lippman. Lincoln, NE: University of Nebraska Press, 2016.' Journal for Peace and Justice Studies 26(2): 114 – 117. 

Tsourapas, G. (2013). 'A Review of The Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt: Democracy Redefined or Confined? By Mariz Tadros. Abingdon: Routledge, 2012.' Polyvocia - The SOAS Journal of Postgraduate Research 5: 49 – 53. 

Other Publications

Tsourapas, G. (2019). Syrian Refugees Have Become Pawns in their Host Nations’ PoliticsWashington Post. 17 June 2019.

Tsourapas, G. (2019). ‘How Migration Deals Lead to Refugee Commodification.’ Refugees Deeply. 13 February 2019.

Tsourapas, G. (2018). ‘The Peculiar Practices of “Authoritarian Emigration States.”British Academy Review, No. 32 (Spring 2018), pp. 22-24.

Tsourapas, G. (2019). How Authoritarian Regimes Use Migration to Exert 'Soft Power’ in Foreign PolicyWashington Post. 6 July 2018.

Tsourapas, G. (2015), 'The Politics of Egyptian Migration to Libya,' Middle East Report and Information Project.

Tsourapas, G. (2014), 'Notes from the Field: Researching Emigration in post-2011 Egypt,' American Political Science Association Migration & Citizenship Newsletter, 2 (2), pp. 58-62.

View all publications in research portal


Migration, refugees, and diaspora policies as well as Middle East politics.

Policy experience

Gerasimos has been employed in the Hellenic Ministry of Foreign Affairs to provide research on Euro-Mediterranean issues.

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