Class 17 (2018-2020)

Manal El Tayar, Lebanon

Duke University – Master in International Development Policy

Manal El Tayar most recently was the Peacebuilding Initiatives Manager at the Institute of Middle East Studies. She holds a postgraduate degree in Mediation from Saint Joseph University, Beirut, and a BA in Political Science and International Affairs from the Lebanese American University, Beirut. Manal’s theses focused on the ‘Roles and Limits of Grassroots Mediation in the Context of the Syrian Civil War’ and on the ‘Role of Leadership in Effective Social Movements in Hard Contexts with a case study on Vaclav Havel’.

Previously, Manal served as the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Regional Liaison Officer for the Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflicts. She also worked closely with many NGOs, INGOs and UN agencies on issues relating to peace and security including the UN Office on Genocide Prevention and the Responsibility to Protect, the Nonviolent Peaceforce and the Permanent Peace Movement.

Manal is also a track and field athlete and has broken national records in mid-distance athletics in Lebanon. She has competed nationally, regionally and internationally. She is passionate about using high-level sports as a platform for peacebuilding between the various communities in Lebanon. Manal hopes to return to Lebanon to invest the skills, knowledge and networks she develops at Duke in the MENA region.