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Maha Shuayb


British Academy Bilateral Chair in Conflict

Director of Centre for Lebanese Studies

E-mail Address


+ 44 (0)1223 767539


  • PhD in Education, Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge
  • MPhil, Educational Research Methods, University of Cambridge
  • MEd, Guidance and Counselling in Education, University of Newcastle upon Tyne
  • BA Sociology, Lebanese University

Membership of Professional Bodies/Associations

  • Executive Committee Member of the International Association for the Study of Forced Migration ISFM.
  • Previous president and founding member of the Lebanese History Association
  • Co-Founding member of the Disability Research and Policy Hub
  • British Educational Research Association, (BAICER)
  • International Sociological Association (ISA)

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I am a sociologist of education interested in investigating education inequalities and the politics of education reform.

For the past 12 years I have been studying the evolving discourse around education of refugee children such as emergency as well as the education of refugees in longer-term settlements.

I have conducted various and quantitative and qualitative longitudinal research. As a director of a research institute in the global south, I have become increasingly interested in understanding equitable research partnerships, knowledge production and research ethics between academic institutions and scholars in the global north and south.

Other areas of research interest include disability studies as well as history and civic education. I co-founded the Lebanese Association for History and the Disability Research and Advocacy Hub which are housed at the Centre for Lebanese Studies. Both initiatives aim to create collectives that bring together academics, practitioners and policy makers to work together on these themes.

Academic Area/Links

  • Member of the Research for Equitable Access and Learning (REAL) Centre, University of Cambridge
  • The Centre for the Study of Global Human Movement

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Research Topics

  • Education inequality
  • Refugee Education
  • Education in Emergency
  • Comparative research
  • Disability
  • History Education

Prospective PhD Applications

would welcome informal contact from prospective PhD students on the following research areas

  • Maha welcomes PhD students interesting to work in any of the above areas.

Current Research Project(s)

  • Unpacking the industry of refugee education and research towards an equitable theory and practice
  • A comparative longitudinal study of education of refugee children in Lebanon, Turkey, Germany and Australia
  • Towards a Global Research Agenda on Civic Engagement: Lessons from a Decade of Mobilization in the Arab Region
  • Disability Under Siege
  • Curriculum reform in the Arab world
  • Promising partnerships models for education in emergencies: a global-local analysis
  • From Education to Employment? Youth trajectories in Jordan and Lebanon’s refugee crisis.

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Principal and Recent Publications

Shuayb, M., Crul, M., & Lelie, F. (In press). The consequences of emergency and humanitarian relief education for Syrian refugee children in Turkey and Lebanon. In M. Suarez-Oroszco & M. Sánchez Sorondo (Eds.). Education: The Global Impact. New York: Columbia University Press.

Shuayb, M, & Brun, C. (2021) Carving out space for equitable collaborative research in protracted displacement, Journal of Refugee Studies, Volume 34, Issue 3, September 2021, Pages 2539–2553,

Shuayb, M., & Ahmad, N. (2021). The Psychosocial Condition of Syrian Children Facing a Precarious Future. Refuge: Canada’s Journal on Refugees, 37(1), 27–37.

Shuayb, M., & Brun, C. (2020). Exceptional and futureless humanitarian education in Lebanon: Prospects for shifting the lens. Refuge, 36(2)

Shuayb, M. & Crul, M, (2020) Reflection on Education of Refugee Children: Beyond Reification and Emergency, Refuge, 36(2)

Crul, M. R. J., Lelie, F., Keskiner, E., Bunar, N., Shuayb, M., Biner, Ö., Schneider, J. (2019). How the different policies and school systems affect the inclusion of Syrian refugee children in Sweden, Germany, Greece, Lebanon and Turkey. Comparative Migration Studies. 7, 1–20.

Shuayb M. (2018), “Who shapes education reform policies in Lebanon? Compare: A Journal of Comparative and International Education, DOI: 10.1080/03057925.2018.1434409 Shuayb, M, Ossaily, (2019) “A Critical Review of History Educational Articles Published in Arabic Peer Reviewed Journals”, Idafat, winter, 45.

Shuayb, M., (2016), Education for Social Cohesion Attempts in Lebanon: Reflections on the 1994 and 2010 Education Reforms; Education As Change, Vol 20, No 3 P: 225-242.

Shuayb, M, (2017), The Role of Research Centres In Shaping Education Reform Policies In Lebanon Post Civil War Period, Al Mustakbal Journal

Shuayb, M. (2015) Human Rights and Peace Education in the Lebanese Civics textbooks: a comparative lens, Research in Comparative and International Education, March, 10,(1).

Shuayb, M. (2014) The Art of Inclusive Exclusions: Educating the Palestinian Refugee Students in Lebanon, Refugee Survey Quarterly, Volume 33, Issue, 2, March, p.1- 18.

Shuayb, M. (2014) A study of the impact of marginalization of Social Cohesion policies and practices in Lebanese Secondary Schools, Omran: Journal for Sociological and Humanities Studies, Arab Centre for Research and Policy Studies, Issue 10, Fall, p.7-24. (In Arabic)

Shuayb, M. (2014), Appreciative Inquiry as a Method for Participatory Change in Secondary Schools in Lebanon, Journal of Mixed Research Methods, Volume 8, Issue, 3.

Shuayb, M. (2014) Current approaches to citizenship education in Lebanese schools and its impact on young people’s political engagement and sectarian perceptions, Al Mustakbal Al Arabi, Issue 420, p.53- 70. (In Arabic)

Shuayb, M. (2012) From Social Cohesion to Social Justice and Care in Education: Re-visiting the Theory and Practice, In M. Shuayb (Ed.), Rethinking education for social cohesion: International case studies. Palgrave Macmillan: London.

Edited Special Issues

Shuayb, M. and Crul, M. (2020), Refugee status and educational attainment of Syrian refugee children: A comparative view from three continents and six countries, Refuge, 36 (2)

Shuayb, M. and AbouMogli, M. (forthcoming) Reconceptualising and Reimagining Citizenship Education in light of youth led global movements, Citizenship

Teaching & Learning

Selected Blogs and Opeds

Shuayb, M (2021), “Localisation only pays lip service to fixing aid’s colonial legacy”, The New Humanitarian, 8 February, 2022.

Shuayb, M, (2022) Opinion: Beyond just programming: data as an instrument of power and activism, Devex, 08 February 2022.

Shuayb, M and Brun, C. (2022) 6 years after the London Syria conference: Was it a gamble to invest in the crumbling Lebanese public school system? 4 Feb 2022.

Shuayb, M. and Hammoud, M, (2021), The Protracted Reality of School-Aged Syrian Refugees in Lebanon: Why go to school with no prospects?

Shuayb, M and Brun, C. (2020) Education in Emergencies: five critical points for shifting the power”,

Shuayb, M and Brun, C, (2020) “For young Syrian refugees, education and employment cannot remain apolitical” , Open Democracy,

Shuayb, M. 2020. How a generation of Syrian children in Lebanon were robbed of their education, accessed 09122020

Shuayb, M. 2020. How a generation of Syrian children in Lebanon were robbed of their education, accessed 09122020