Dania Thafer is a political scientist with a focus on political economy and international relations. Her current research explores the effect of state-business relations on economic development for the existing youth-bulges in rentier economies with an emphasis on the Arab Gulf states. She has been widely published on matters concerning the Arab Gulf region including several articles, a monograph, and a co-edited book entitled The Arms Trade, Military Services and the Security Market in the Gulf States: Trends and Implications. Dania is the founding Executive Director of Gulf International Forum, a think tank focused on the Gulf region. Previously, she worked at the National Defense University’s Near East South Asia Center for Strategic Studies. Ms. Thafer has a master’s degree in Political Economy from New York University. She will be graduating this fall with Doctor of Philosophy in Political Science from American University in Washington, DC. Her dissertation is titled "Obstacles for Innovation in Rentier Economies: States, Elites, and the Emerging Youth." Dania is a visiting researcher at CCAS for the 2019-2020 academic year.