Lebanon’s political economy has long been described as exceptional. The trope of a “Lebanese economic miracle,” in which Lebanon is a paragon of economic success, was long amplified by the ruling elite in order to maintain a status quo.

The 2019-2020 crises not only swept away this idea but also made blatant another kind of exceptionalism in the country—its record-high income and wealth inequality, which is perpetuated by the corrupt political economy. Extreme inequality is not a new phenomenon, however; rather it was brushed aside by the ruling elite, which largely consists of the nation’s wealthiest.

How can Lebanon create a new economic model that would put social justice at its core? Did the 2019 revolution create the opportunity to think and design policies that could decrease inequality levels? Join us for a conversation with Lydia Assouad, Toufic Gaspard, Haneen Sayed, and Gregg Carlstrom to discuss Lebanon’s worsening inequality and Assouad's latest paper, Lebanon's Political Economy: From Predatory to Self-Devouring, on Friday, February 19 from 5:00-6:00 p.m. Beirut (10:00-11:00 a.m. EST).

The discussion will be held in English. Viewers may submit their questions for the panelists using the Live Chat feature on Facebook and YouTube during the event. For more information, please contact Alex Müller at alexander.muller@carnegie-mec.org.