Dr. Roxane Farmanfarmaian

Senior Research Fellow

Expertise: Dr. Farmanfarmaian is a specialist on Iran and Western policy toward the Persian Gulf region, including issues of oil, media, terrorism and political Islam. Her current research focuses on identity, radicalisation and securitisation, and the use of soft power in relations between the West and the Middle East.

Contact: r.farmanfarmaian@gpilondon.com


Professional Background:

Dr. Farmanfarmaian is a Senior Research Fellow at the Global Policy Institute, an Affiliated Lecturer for the International Relations of the Modern Middle East at the University of Cambridge, and a Visiting Scholar at the Middle East Center at the University of Utah. She received her PhD in International Studies as a Donner Scholar of TransAtlantic Relations at the Centre of International Studies at Cambridge University, where she also served as Editor of the Cambridge Review of International Affairs. Dr. Farmanfarmaian currently teaches on the International Relations of the Middle East, New Media in the Arab World, and Identity and Conflict in Muslim society.

Her specialist knowledge has led to many influential roles. As a Briefer for the British Ministry of Defence and a regular lecturer for Madingley College at the University of Cambridge, she has addressed officers of all three branches engaged in operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. As an Iran area expert, she has consulted for a variety of governmental and commercial organizations, including the Bertelsmann Center for Applied Research, the  US Department of Defense, the Centre of International Policy and Diplomacy (SOAS) and Lockheed Martin. Dr. Farmanfarmaian is a regular commentator on Iran and the Middle East for the media, including SKY TV, the BBC, NPR, NBC and al-Jazeera. She is a frequent  guest speaker on the subject of the Middle East, with appearances at  the Utah Council for Citizen Diplomacy,  the Frontline Club of London, the Committee of Foreign Relations of Salt Lake City and of Dallas, the Commonwealth Club of San Francisco, and the Hinkley Institute of International Affairs.

Dr. Farmanfarmaian has been a guest lecturer at the University of California, Berkeley; Denison College, and Brigham Young University. She is a board member of the Cambridge Review of International Studies, the European Journal of Iranian Studies, and the International Qajar Studies Association. Other memberships include the International Studies Association (ISA), the  British International Studies Association (BISA), the Middle East Studies Association (MESA) and the Society of Iranian Studies.


Blood and Oil: Inside the Shah’s Iran (Random House, 4th ed, 2005); War and Peace in Qajar Persia: Implications Past and Present, ed. (Routledge 2008). Scholarly articles and chapters on the Middle East and its relations with the US and Europe have appeared in academic journals and full-length publications. Dr. Farmanfarmaian publishes regularly in the mainstream media, with pieces in the Times of London Sunday Magazine, the New York Times, and the Salt Lake Tribune, as well as in the literary press. Her most recent publication is ‘Out of the Revolution’, which appeared in Paris Was Ours (Algonquin 2011).