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Vali R. Nasr

Majid Khadduri Professor of Middle East Studies and International Affairs


Vali Nasr is a Middle East scholar, foreign policy adviser and commentator on international relations. His most recent book, "The Dispensable Nation" deals with the implications of the Obama administration’s foreign policy on American strategic interests. His previous books, "Forces of Fortune" and "The Shia Revival" examined the postwar sectarian violence in Iraq and the Arab Spring uprising, and contributed to US policy formulated in response to those events. Nasr served as the 8th Dean of Johns Hopkins SAIS from 2012 - 2019; prior to this position he was a professor of international politics at Tufts University's Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. From 2009 to 2011, he was the special adviser to the President's special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan; he served on the faculties of the Naval Postgraduate School, Stanford University, the University of California, San Diego and the University of San Diego; he was a Carnegie scholar and a senior fellow at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government. He also served as an adjunct senior fellow for Middle Eastern studies at the Council on Foreign Relations and a senior fellow in foreign policy at the Brookings Institution. Nasr is a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He received a PhD in political science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.



  • Iran
  • Middle East
  • Pakistan
  • South Asia


  • American Foreign Policy
  • International Relations
  • Islamic Religion, Culture and Law
  • Nation-building and Democratization


  • Persian

In the News

Global protest in season of discontent.

Vali Nasr interviewed on CNN International, 11/18

This is 'Arab Spring 2.0'.

Vali Nasr interviewed on CNN International, 11/4

Globally, people are taking their discontent to the streets.

Vali Nasr interviewed on PBS NewsHour, 11/3

How will the success of the U.S. raid impact Middle East relations?

Vali Nasr interviewed on PBS NewsHour, 10/27

Vali Nasr quoted in The New York Times, 10/23

Vali Nasr quoted in The New York Times, 10/23

Macron says Trump-Rouhani talks could happen within weeks.

Vali Nasr quoted in The Guardian, 8/26

Debate flares over Afghanistan as Trump considers troop withdrawal.

Vali Nasr quoted in The New York Times, 8/16

China-U.S. Focus Trade and Economic Relations Forum.

Vali Nasr interviewed for China U.S. Focus, 8/10

As U.S.-Iran tensions escalate, is any room left for negotiations?

Vali Nasr quoted in National Catholic Reporter, 7/16

Trump’s Iran strategy is helping China.

Vali Nasr wrote in The Atlantic, 7/12

Iran says it's broken the terms of 2015 nuclear deal.

Vali Nasr interviewed on Australian Broadcasting Corporation Radio AM, 7/2

Trump’s tanker escort plans to counter Iran have unclear goal.

Vali Nasr quoted in The New York Times, 6/28

Backed into a corner, Iran is lashing out.

Vali Nasr quoted in The Economist, 6/22

Iran shoots down an American drone.

Vali Nasr interviewed on NPR 1A, 6/20

Who gets to decide about war with Iran?

Vali Nasr cited in Tribune News Service, 5/20

U.S. national security adviser pushing hard line on Iran.

Vali Nasr interviewed on CNN International Hala Gorani Tonight, 5/16

International expert says Trump administration must prove Iran is a serious threat.

Vali Nasr interviewed on NPR All Things Considered, 5/15

U.S. cites increasing threats from Iran; allies skeptical.

Vali Nasr interviewed on CNN International’s CNN Today, 5/15

China. Iran. North Korea. Venezuela. Foreign policy tests mount for Trump.

Vali Nasr quoted in The Wall Street Journal, 5/9

Bolton, Iran, and hegemonic hubris.

Vali Nasr cited in LobeLog, 5/8

Trump’s Iran policy is not changing the regime’s actions.

Vali Nasr quoted in Bloomberg Businessweek, 4/22

War of the worlds.

Vali Nasr interviewed on NPR Throughline podcast, 4/18

G7 economies have split views on the BRI.

Vali Nasr cited in China Internet Information Center, 4/10

America in decline.

Vali Nasr interviewed on TRT World Bigger than Five, 3/13

India and Pakistan edge closer towards conflict.

Vali Nasr interviewed on WBEZ Worldview, 3/5

Pakistan set to secure funding from Saudi Arabia and the IMF.

Vali Nasr quoted in Financial Times, 2/12

JS Bank hosts session with Prof Vali Nasr.

Vali Nasr highlighted in The International News, 2/9

U.S. keen to wash its hands of Afghanistan.

Vali Nasr cited in Dawn, 2/2