The Arab Spring: Socio-economic Challenges and Opportunities. Report Summary
The research focuses on three case studies - Algeria, Egypt and Tunisia - and aims to: assess the main socio-economic and political factors that have led to the toppling of the regimes in Tunisia and Egypt and have sparked violent protests in Algeria; discuss the main socio-economic challenges facing these countries in the aftermath of the Arab Spring; and assess the extent to which new and old civil society actors, such as trade unions, entrepreneurial organizations and the various forms of activism involving women and youth, will be able to influence the pace and direction of the economic and political reforms promised by the governments in each country.
Summary of the research study prepared by the IAI for the National Council for Economics and Labour (CNEL), presented at the conference on "La primavera araba: sfide economiche e sociali e ruolo dell’Europa", organised by CNEL, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and IAI, Rome, 13 December 2011.
1. Economic and Social Political Background ofto the Arab Spring
1.1. Deteriorating labour market conditions, particularly among the young educated youth
1.2. The retrenchment of state welfare systems and the worsening of living conditions
1.3. Authoritarianism and the regimes’ control over the economy
2. Socio-economic Challenges of the Arab Spring
2.1. Socio-economic repercussions of the Arab Spring and the governments’ response
2.2. Uncertain political transitions
3. The Role of Civil Society
3.1. Civil society before the Arab Spring between repression and cooptation
3.2. Growing mobilisation over the last decade
3.3. The Arab Spring
3.4. Future Challenges and Opportunities