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Careers and Further Study with an IAIS degree

IAIS alumni working across a variety of different fields discuss the career options available to students.

This panel discussion is part of the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies Careers Days. 11:00-12:00: Drop in session with Susannah Day, Global Employability Consultant in IAIS common room. 12:00-1:00pm: What can I do with my IAIS degree? with Careers Consultant Mark Armitage in IAIS Seminar Room 2 1:00-2:30pm: Panel Discussion: Careers and further study with an IAIS degree in IAIS LT1 (please sign up for the panel discussion through The panel will be followed by an opportunity to network with our guest speakers. 2:30-3:30pm: Networking tea and cake – a chance to have a chat with the panelists over tea and cake on the IAIS street.

Event details

Information about our panellists:
• Aimee Dawson studied Arabic and Middle East Studies at the University of Exeter (2013) and spent her year abroad between Cairo and Fez. Combining her studies and her passion for the arts, she assisted with art exhibitions at the IAIS and The Phoenix Gallery in Exeter as well as completing an internship at Edge of Arabia, a social enterprise committed to improving understanding through exhibitions, publications, and education programmes in London. She is currently the Editorial Assistant at Ibraaz, the leading critical forum on visual culture in North Africa and the Middle East, where she writes for and edits online and print publications. Aimee is also currently studying for her Masters in Contemporary Art and Art Theory of Asia and Africa at the School of Oriental and African Studies, London.
• Tobias Borck is a PhD candidate at the University of Exeter and is currently a Research Analyst at the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI). His PhD research focuses on foreign policy in the contemporary Middle East; and at RUSI he works on issues relating to security issues in the region, publishing articles, contributing research to ongoing projects and organising events. He has previously completed a BA in Arabic and Middle East Studies (2013) and a MA in Applied Security Strategy (2014). He has studied in Cairo and Fez, and worked as a Translation Assistant at the Centre for Arab-West Understanding in Cairo.
• Ross Martyn-Fisher graduated from Exeter in 2011 with a degree in Arabic and Middle East Studies.  For the past 18 months Ross has been working as an Analyst in the Due Diligence and Strategic Research department of Stroz Friedberg, an investigations, intelligence and risk management firm, based in London. The role entails research and investigations into individuals, companies and issues, primarily in the Middle East, but also in South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. It means that I use my Arabic on a daily basis and that I have to constantly keep on top of both political and business developments in the Middle East and North Africa.
• Benjamin Lydon is the Chief of Operations Officer of the Arab Reform Initiative. He is responsible for proposal and narrative report writing, donor relations, supervision of the progress of the research programmes and the planned publications, ensuring good internal communication and setting up systems for monitoring and evaluation of the programmes and publications. Benjamin is also the Humanitarian Operations Coordinator and co-founder of the Initiative for a New Syria. He set up the systems and managed the funding, coordination and monitoring and reporting for around 80 projects inside Syria with a total spend of $USD 5 million over period of 18 months.
• Emman El-Badawy is currently in her final year completing a PhD in Arab and Middle East politics. Emman previously worked as North Africa project officer at the counter-extremism think tank, the Quilliam Foundation. She is also a BBC expert voice on subjects relating to both the Middle East and extremism/radicalization in Islam. In this role she has assisted in documentaries for the BBC, and is currently working on a documentary with the current affairs team on 'Jihadi wives' and women traveling to Syria. Emman also appears regularly on Sky News, providing expert opinion on issues from the Syrian Civil war and ISIS to domestic counter-extremism efforts at home. She is now working to develop both her academic and media career.


Institute of Arabic and Islamic Studies