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Noura Wahby

  • Position: Assistant Professor and Middle East Studies Program Director
  • Department: Department of Public Policy and Administration
Brief Biography

Noura Wahby is an assistant professor at the Department of Public Policy and Administration at The American University in Cairo. Prior to joining AUC, she was an ESRC postdoctoral fellow at the Department of Geography at the University of Cambridge. She previously worked at the Cambridge Centre of Smart Infrastructure looking at citizen engagement, digital technologies, and local infrastructure in the United Kingdom. Her doctoral research at Cambridge’s Centre of Development Studies focused on the political economy of urban development and urban waterscapes in Cairo, Egypt. Her research was awarded the 2019 Malcolm H. Kerr Best Dissertation Award in Social Sciences during the Middle East Studies Association annual meeting in New Orleans, United States. She has also worked professionally in training, evaluation and project design in a diversity of international development projects in the Middle East. Her research interests include the urban commons, governance, informality, water, and political economy. She currently directs the Middle East Studies programs at AUC.

Research Interest
  • Urban policies
  • Social and environmental policies
  • Governance
  • Political economy
  • Digitalisation
  • Uneven development


Book Chapters

  • Wahby, N (2018). Egyptian Environmentalism and Urban Grassroots Non-movements, in Jose Vasquez and Elia Apostolopoulou (Eds.) The Right to Nature: Social Movements, Environmental Justice and Neoliberal Natures, Routledge-Earthscan, London, UK.

Book Reviews

  • ElGhamrawi, S. and Wahby, N (2023).  Review of We Buy Everything: Housing and Urban Changes in Egypt, Al-Maraya Press 2022, by Shawkat, Y et al., International Journal of Urban and Regional Research.

  • Wahby, N (2020). Review of The Lived Nile. Environment, disease, and material colonial economy in Egypt, Stanford University Press 2019, by Jennifer L. Derr, Water Alternatives.


Policy Outputs

  • Wahby, Sanghoon-Park, A, and Bhangaonkar, R. Shedding Light on Resilience Policy: Case Studies from Egypt, India, and the UK. GAPP Policy Brief Series:

  • Wahby, N. (2021). Environmentalism from Below: Local and Municipal Politics. In Arab Reform Initiative: Environmental Politics in the Middle East and North Africa: Proceedings from First Inaugural Conference.

  • 2019, PhD in Development Studies, University of Cambridge
  • 2013, Master’s in Public Administration, The American University in Cairo
  • 2008 Bachelor of Arts in Applied Languages, Université Sorbonne Nouvelle- Paris III and the French University of Egypt


  • AUC-Charles University (Prague) Erasmus Program Faculty Exchange, April-May 2023: Public lecture on MENA Environmentalisms and Local Infrastructural Practices, co-leading faculty workshop on global environmentalisms, student workshop, and podcast interview with on environmental themes. 


  • AUC Core Course Competition co-winner first prize for course proposal “Sustainability in the Cracks of Urban Policy” (core curriculum global studies category)


  • AUC School of Global Affair and Public Affairs Faculty Research Excellence first prize

2019 - 2020 

  • ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship Award, Department of Geography, University of Cambridge


  • Malcolm H. Kerr Best Dissertation Award, Winner in Social Sciences, Middle East Studies Association, New Orleans, United States
  • Best Dissertation Honourable Mention and Best Poster Award for Doctoral Researchers, Association of British Turkish Academics, London, United Kingdom
  • Graduate Alumni of the year, School of Global Affairs and Public Policy, The American University in Cairo, Egypt


  • International Journal for Urban and Regional Research (IJURR) Foundation PhD Studentship

University Services

  • 2023 - 2025 University Senate Member, Curriculum Committee Member
  • 2023 Co-convenor, AUC-CEDEJ Political Ecologies Conference
  • 2023 Member, Scientific Committee for AMEPPA/MENAPAR/OECD Conference
  • 2023 Directing Policy Brief component, Leading Dynamic Change in Public Organisations with Ministry of Economic Development and Planning and Public Policy Executive Education Program
  • 2022-2025 Member, AUC Institutional Review Board
  • 2022-2023 Convenor, PPAD Research Colloquium
  • 2022 Convener, AUC- London School of Economics Climate Urbanism Workshop- Local scholars’ roundtable, LSE Public lecture, student-led design thinking workshop
  • 2022 Member, Organising Committee for AMEPPA Conference
  • 2021-2023 Member, Comprehensive Exam Departmental Task Force
  • 2020-2023 Member, Accreditation and Program Quality Assurance Departmental Committee
  • 2020-2023 Member, Research departmental committee
  • 2020-2023 Supervised 13 MA students to completion, and currently supervising 7 students; examined 22 students across Middle East Studies, Public Policy and Sustainable Development.

Editorial Positions

  • 2020, Co-editor, Middle East Urban Studies Book Series, AUC Press
  • 2019, Co-Founder and Editor-in-Chief, Arab Urbanism Collective
  • Urban Infrastructure Policy for Sustainability

  • Greening the Built Environment

  • Research Methods for Public policy and Administration

  • Qualitative Methods for Public Policy and Administration

  • Public Policy Theory and Practice

  • Leadership and Communication for Public Affairs