Skip to main content

Schütze, Dr. Benjamin

benjamin.schuetze [at]
+49 (0)761 888 78 23
Areas of research:
external interventions and 'democracy promotion', transregional authoritarian practices, economic liberalisation, military collaboration, renewable energies
Regional focus:
Middle East and North Africa (MENA)
Professional experience:
since 2022
Head of DFG-funded Emmy Noether Junior Research Group 'Renewable Energies, Renewed Authoritarianisms? THe Political Economy of Solar Energy in the MENA'
Junior Fellow, Young Academy for Sustainability Research, Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies (FRIAS), University of Freiburg
Arnold Bergstraesser Institute (ABI), senior researcher
University of Freiburg, Chair for Development Theory and Policy, Department of Political Science, Post-Doc
SOAS, University of London, Department of Politics and International Studies, graduate teaching assistant
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Crisis Prevention and Recovery Unit, Beirut / Libanon, Carlo-Schmid-fellow
PhD (without corrections), Prof. Tripp, Politics and International Studies,School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London, UK (extended field research stays in Jordan, Brussels and Washington DC)
MA Near & Middle Eastern Studies, SOAS, University of London, UK
BA Arabic studies and Political Science, University of Leipzig, Germany
Semester abroad at the American University of Beirut (AUB), Lebanon
Additional information:


DFG Emmy Noether Junior Research Group: Renewable Energies, Renewed Authoritarianisms? The Political Economy of Solar Energy in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA)

Thyssen foundation: Promises of Democratic Connection? The Politics of Transregional Energy Infrastructure Expansion

EUCOR seed money: Making Infrastructure Global? Design and Governance of Infrastructural Expansion in the Global South



Research Network External Democracy Promotion EDP

Security in Context

FRIAS Young Academy for Sustainability Research



Member of the International Editorial Advisory Board of Middle East Critique

Co-Speaker of the German Oriental Studies Association's working group 'Postcolonial Perspectives'

Member of the Steering Committee of the Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies (FRIAS)



(2022) Unlikely Companions of Energy Transitions? Opportunities and Challenges of Triangular Cooperation between the EU and the GCC in the MENA, EuroMeSCo policy report, IEMed and EU, co-authored with Eckart Woertz

(2020) The Socio-Economic Effects of Solar Energy in the Middle East and North Africa, expert study, Friedrich Ebert Foundation (FES) Climate and Energy Project MENA

(2018-19) Politökonomische Kurzanalyse (PÖK) Jordanien (Neufassung 2018, Überarbeitung 2019), German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).


Select publications


(2019) Promoting Democracy, Reinforcing Authoritarianism: US and European Policy in Jordan (Cambridge University Press); reviewed in The Middle East Journal and Democratization.

Articles & book chapters:

(2024) "'Seizing the Moment': Arab-Israeli normalization, infrastructure as a means to bypass politics and the promotion of an Israeli-Jordanian transit trade route", Geopolitics, online-first.

(2023) "Follow the Grid, Follow the Violence: The Project for a Transregional Mediterranean Electricity Ring", Middle East Critique, online-first.

(2023) "The Geopolitical Economy of an Undermined Energy Transition: The Case of Jordan" (co-authored with Hussam Hussein), Energy Policy, 180: 113655, open access.

(2023) "Authoritarian power and contestation beyond the state" (co-authored with Julia Gurol, Alke Jenss, Fabricio Rodriguez & Cita Wetterich), Globalizations, online-first.

(2023) "Prefiguring politics: transregional energy infrastructures as a lens for the study of authoritarian practices" (co-authored with Alke Jenss), Globalizations, online-first.

(2022) "Infrastructuring Authoritarian Power: Arab-Chinese Transregional Collaboration beyond the State" (co-authored with Julia Gurol), International Quarterly for Asian Studies, Vol. 53, No. 2, pp. 231-249, open access.

(2021) "Rethinking Authoritarian Power: The Logistics Space and Authoritarian Practices in and between Secondary Port Cities of the Global South" (co-authored with Alke Jenss), International Studies Quarterly, Vol. 65, pp. 82-94, open-access.

(2020) "Essential Readings on 'Democracy Promotion'", Jadaliyya, Middle East Studies Pedagogy Initiative (MESPI), July 21.

(2018) "Marketing parliament: The constitutive effects of external attempts at parliamentary strengthening in Jordan", Cooperation and Conflict, Vol. 53, No. 2, pp. 237-58.

(2017) "Simulating, marketing, and playing war: US-Jordanian military collaboration and the politics of commercial security", Security Dialogue, Vol. 48, No. 5, pp. 431-50.

(2017) "Jordan’s KASOTC: Privatising anti-terror training", Al Jazeera, July 17.