The University of Massachusetts Amherst

David Mednicoff

Headshot of David Mednicoff
Associate Professor of Middle Eastern Studies & Public Policy


740 Herter Hall

David Mednicoff is associate professor of Middle Eastern studies and public policy and chair of the Department of Judaic and Near Eastern Studies in the College of Humanities and Fine Arts. A lawyer and political scientist, he has a broad background in law, global politics, and Arab societies. His research focuses on connections between legal and political ideas and institutions at the national and transnational levels, particularly as these relate to current policy issues in the Middle East. One of these projects, on the meanings and political implications of the rule of law in Gulf Arab states, was funded by a $1 million grant from the Qatar National Research Fund.

Mednicoff has been a Fulbright scholar in both Morocco and Qatar and spent the summer of 2014 as a fellow at Bielefeld University's Institute for Advanced Study. He has presented his work at the Department of State, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, the Saudi Arabia Institute of Diplomatic Studies, and Georgetown, Harvard, Stanford and Yale universities, among other places. 

He won the College of Social and Behavioral Science’s Outstanding Teacher Award and a national teaching prize cosponsored by the Smithsonian Institution and Dickinson College for university teaching related to US and Middle Eastern relations. He does a wide range of commentary for national and international media outlets, including frequent pieces for the Conversation and the Huffington Post.

Mednicoff has an AB in public policy (Woodrow Wilson School) and Middle Eastern studies from Princeton University and a JD, an MA, and a PhD in political science from Harvard University.

Research interests: 

Middle Eastern, comparative, and international law and politics; US foreign policy, human rights, and refugee politics