• Academic

    "It is not enough to describe. It is not enough to deconstruct. It is imperative to do both – but to also build, on the basis of ethics and principles. To do otherwise is a betrayal of the conviction of scholarship."

    Educated at Sheffield and Warwick universities in law and the social sciences, Dr H.A. Hellyer’s academic career in politics and international affairs has included positions at and affiliations with Harvard [USA], Warwick [UK], the University of Technology [Malaysia], and the American University [Egypt]. 
    ‘…deeply knowledgeable…’ Professor Tarek Masoud, Harvard University

    “… a lucid but hardly dispassionate analyst… clear-headed thinking… a sure guide….” Professor Nathan J. Brown, George Washington University

  • Public Commentator

    “Access to the public arena as an intellectual is a privilege and a trust – and the loftiest way to uphold that is to be a disruptor in support of the oppressed, and a critic of abuses of power, without partisanship.”

    Dr H. A. Hellyer currently serves as a senior associate fellow at the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) and the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, where he focuses on international affairs, security studies, and religion. His career, which cuts across long periods of research on and living in the Arab world and the West has included posts at Brookings and the Atlantic Council. 
    “…a preeminent scholar and analyst deeply-embedded in the [Arab] region…” Marwan Muasher, former Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister of Jordan

    “It is hard to imagine a better qualified analyst … honest and probing…" New York Times 

  • Islamic Studies Scholar

    Etiquette (adab), concisely defined, is the spectacle (mashhad) of justice as it is reflected by wisdom (hikma).” (S. M. Naquib al-Attas)

    Dr H. A. Hellyer’s research and teaching interests in Islamic studies have led him to being appointed as visiting Professor at the Raja Zarith Centre for Advanced Studies on Islam, Science and Civilisation at the University of Technology [Malaysia] of the senior students of the Malaysian polymath Professor S. M. Naquib al-Attas, Professorial Fellow at Cambridge Muslim College [UK] of Dr Timothy J. Winter, and Senior Scholar at Azzawia Institute [South Africa] of the successors to Sayyid Muhammad b. Alawi of Makka.  
    “…timely and important. … must reading for scholars, students and policymakers” Professor John L. Esposito, Georgetown University

    “much benefit, and majestic usefulness…it is rich in meaning and abundant in…intellectual benefit” Shaykh Dr. Sayyid Muhammad bin Yahya al-Ninowy, Dean & Founder, Madina Institutes and Seminaries

  • On the West

    “My awareness and background as a Westerner does not blind me to the faults and failings of our history, nor does it encourage me to believe the fables of our supremacy. Rather, it reminds me that others have paid the price for our follies, and that our potential, if we pursue an ethical existence, is boundless, wound up with the fate of the world. If, however, we take these mythologies as real, then we will destroy ourselves and everything around us.” 
     “While many today think we need to go beyond multiculturalism, Hellyer argues that the success of what he calls stage one multiculturalism means neither the end of common citizenship and national identity, nor their re- imposition but rather their re-making.” Tariq Modood, Professor of Sociology and founding Director of the University Research Centre for the Study of Ethnicity and Citizenship, University of Bristol
  • On the Arab world

    “I will forever reject the bigotry of low expectations that insists that the peoples of the wider Arab world, of which I am an integral part, can or should only be ruled by autocracy, irrespective of Islamist-orientation or not. That is a trap that we have fallen into time and again, and any notion of comprehensive human security that does not place fundamental freedoms and rights at the heart of it, will doom us to continuous failure.”
    “meticulously unpicks the struggle for power that began after Mubarak stepped down….” Financial Times

    “…Hellyer writes engagingly…” Foreign Affairs
    “doesn’t spare anyone and he refreshingly avoids the normal cliches… I’ve always trusted his analysis, non-partisan as its always been." the Intercept



Dr H.A. Hellyer

Dr H.A. Hellyer is a scholar and public commentator, who speaks to the interchange between politics, international studies and religion. By way of generations of heritage and upbringing in both the West and the Arab world, he has written four books on those topics in those different geographic areas. A senior associate fellow and scholar based at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (USA) and the Royal United Services Institute (UK), he's a professorial fellow and visiting professor at Cambridge Muslim College and the University of Technology (Malaysia).


  • A Revolution Undone: Egypt’s Road Beyond Revolt” (Oxford University Press)

    “…. A fresh take…the work of an engaged observer…” (Times Literary Supplement) 

    “…considers Egypt’s recent uprisings and descent into military rule… Hellyer writes engagingly…” (Foreign Affairs) 

    “In short, the book was a brilliant read, and at times, painstakingly detailed…” (Huffington Post) 
  • Engagement with the Muslim Community and Counterterrorism: British Lessons for the West” (Brookings Institution Press

    Historians will undoubtedly record that the events of September 11th, 2001 were a turning point for policy makers and politicians in the United States of America. America faced a new kind of security threat, the response to which would spark a series of difficult chain-reactions and challenge core national values. More than six years on, America is still grappling with the question of how to respond, both domestically and internationally, to the terrorist threat.

  • “Muslims of Europe: the ‘Other’ Europeans” (Edinburgh University Press)

    “Muslims of Europe: The ‘Other Europeans’ is a thoughtful and ambitious reflection on the place of Islam and Muslims in Europe.” Jonathan Laurence, Professor, Boston College

    “Both specialists and the general reader will find this book a valuable aid in understanding the dynamics of diversity in the contemporary world.” John O. Voll, Professor, Georgetown University 
  • The Islamic tradition and the human rights discourse.

    The Islamic Tradition and the Human Rights Discourse is a collection of thought provoking articles that aim to elevate the conversation on Islam and human rights beyond the confines of “compatibility.” The report, compiled and edited by Dr. H.A. Hellyer, nonresident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East, sheds light on new methods for the exploration and engagement of the Islamic tradition and the rights discourse, featuring theoretical and practical accounts by Muslim scholars, academics, and human rights practitioners.
  • "A Sublime Way: The Sufi Path of the Sages of Makka"

    “The Middle East has suffered significant intellectual and moral damage….it is a source of great reassurance to see that the authentic and indigenous spirituality of the Holy Cities has survived…and is now attracting many of the younger people who are seeking a merciful and authentic alternative to the fundamentalist project. This book is a very welcome indication of that timely change.”

    – Dr Timothy J. Winter/ Shaykh Abdal Hakim Murad, Faculty of Divinity, Cambridge University Dean, Cambridge Muslim College

Featured Writings

‘And give good tidings to the strangers’ [MADAMASR]

  For years now, I’ve had an edited copy of a famous picture of a solitary German man standing in a crowd of Nazi supporters in 1935 as the background to my Facebook page. Surrounded by scores of presumably loyal backers of the Third Reich, who all appear to be offering the Nazi salute, he […]

Is an “Islamic Reformation” a good idea? (Probably not, but some people want one anyway) [ABC]

February 8, 2020 “I always look at the Middle East and think, you know, in America, we think that the default position is peace. And we go to war, we have a war, somebody wins, somebody loses, we finish, we have a peace agreement, we go back to our lives. The Middle East, they’ve been […]

The unfinished business of the Arab Spring uprisings [GLOBE AND MAIL]

December 27, 2019 H.A. Hellyer is a senior associate fellow at the Royal United Services Institute and the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Nine years ago, the Arab world began to see the simmering of uprisings, beginning in Tunisia, and then continuing eastward. The common narrative is that most of those uprisings led to catastrophe and […]

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