Dr H.A. Hellyer, FRSA, is a fellow at Cambridge University, a senior associate fellow at the Royal United Services Institute in London, and a nonresident scholar at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. A prominent public intellectual of Egyptian, English, Sudanese and Moroccan heritage, raised on three continents, he has been clarifying the geopolitics of the Middle East, the West, and Southeast Asia to publics and governments globally for more than two decades. In 2020, he was elected to be a fellow of the UK’s Royal Society of Arts, in recognition of his scholarship and analysis particularly in the international relations of the Middle East, security studies, and belief.
Dr Hellyer was appointed deputy convener of the UK government’s Taskforce on Tackling Extremism after the 2005 London bombings, and the UK Foreign Office’s first ESRC fellow, where he focused on MENA diasporas. He has held positions at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, the Brookings Institution, the American University in Cairo, the Institute of Strategic and International Studies (Malaysia) and the University of Technology in Malaysia, as part of his dedication to public engagement in MENA, the West and Southeast Asia.
As part of his portfolio, he co-steers the European Commission project on “Radicalisation, Secularism and the Governance of Religion”, which brings together North African, Middle Eastern, European, and Asian perspectives with a consortium of twelve universities and think-tanks – a project where Dr Hellyer is responsible for co-managing a research team of some 30 people worldwide, leading specifically on the MENA region, security issues, and overall oversight. A research entrepreneur, he also founded the VC Group for research consultancy, and served as the first Arab world-based Senior Practice Consultant at the Gallup Organisation.
His seven books include A Revolution Undone: Egypt’s Road Beyond Revolt for Oxford University Press and Hurst & Company, Muslims of Europe: the ‘Other’ Europeans for Edinburgh University Press, Counter-Terrorism: British Lessons for the West for Brookings Institution Press, and A Sublime Path: the Sufi Way of the Makkan Sages for Fons Vitae. Having worked in North Africa, across the Arabian Gulf, South Africa, Malaysia, and Singapore, as well as Europe and the United States, Dr Hellyer’s analysis is regularly featured in leading outlets such as the Washington Post, CNN, Mada Masr, the BBC, Foreign Policy, the New York Times, the Guardian, Politico, the Financial Times, New Straits Times, and Daily News Egypt.
His degree in law was read at the University of Sheffield, followed by an advanced degree in international political economy, and a multidisciplinary PhD at the University of Warwick, completed at the age of 25, as an Economic and Social Research Council scholar.