Chairman – General (ret). Sergiu MEDAR is former National Security Advisor and Chief of National Security Department, former General Director of the Defence Intelligence General Department, and, previously, head of the Romanian Military Intelligence Department.

He holds a Ph.D. and worked as scientific researcher at the Science and Engineering Institute. From 1990-1992 he worked with the Military Intelligence Department, pursuing in the meantime postgraduate studies in military intelligence. In 1992 he was appointed deputy to the military attaché of Romania in the US, Argentina, and Brazil. In 1996, he was promoted to full military attaché in the US. General Medar was a guest speaker at the Marshall Center in Garmish, Germany, and at the US Joint Military Intelligence College. He is a professor at “Lucian Blaga” University, Sibiu, and associate professor at the National Defence University of Romania and National Defence College.

President and Director of the Political Department – Flavius CABA-MARIA is Managing Partner in International Competitive Solution, a company that provides legal, economic, and business strategy consulting to firms and entities interested to invest in the Middle East. He researches his Ph.D. studies on Economic and International Affairs – The Role and Behavior of States and Multinational Companies in Global Trade War, particularly in the Middle East (Bucharest University of Economic Studies / ASE), as well the dynamic of the Middle East international relations. He organized international conferences and seminars, and summer schools that debated timely and controversial subjects regarding Middle East issues and their impact on the European area. He authored and coordinated a number of news articles and scientific papers on energetic security, fighting terrorism, defense systems, international relations, and regional development. He coordinates projects aiming at better understanding the cultural, social, and political diversity of the Middle East, removing stereotypes and promoting better relations between the EU and Middle East countries. Previously, he used to focus on AfPak issues. He holds a B.A. in Military Science and Organizational Management, a B.A. in Law and an M.A. in Political Science, and a Swiss certificate as Political Adviser (POLAD).

His areas of expertise and interests are Iranian nuclear deal / JCPOA; foreign policy of Iran; Russian’s strategy in the Middle East, particularly in Syria; China’s strategy in the Middle East; Syria Crises -reconstruction of Syria; economic sanctions and trade war in the Middle East.

Program Director – Ecaterina MAŢOI is a Lecturer at Strategic, Public, and Intercultural Communication Department, Security and Defence Faculty, „Carol I” National Defense University, Bucharest Romania. She holds a Ph.D. in Intelligence and National Security („Carol I” National Defense University), a Dr. Phil des. title in Middle Eastern Studies (Humanities Faculty, Basel University, Switzerland), as well as an M.A. degree in Political Sciences, Security and Diplomacy specialization (National University of Political Studies and Public Administration / SNSPA, Bucharest, Romania).

Her areas of expertise and interests are: National Security, Middle Eastern Studies, SSR in Post-Saddam Iraq, Disinformation, Cultures and civilizations; The Military in 20th Century Middle East Politics; Geopolitics of the Persian Gulf region and Nuclear policies in MENA. Mrs. MAŢOI is also a devoted researcher and a volunteer trainer on different issues related to her fields of expertise.

Scientific Research Director – Marius LAZĂR is the Executive Director of the Center for Middle Eastern and Mediterranean Studies, Babes-Bolyai University (BBU), Cluj-Napoca. He is Lecturer in the Department of International Studies and Contemporary History, Faculty of History and Philosophy, BBU, currently the recipient of Erasmus Mundus Post-doctoral fellowship, Department of History, Université de Sfax, Tunisia.

Courses taught: International Relations in 20th and 21st centuries, History and Geopolitics of the Middle East; History and Geopolitics of the Caucasus and of the Central & South Asia. Ph.D. in International Relations, BBU; MA in Geopolitics, Institut Français de Géopolitique, Université Paris 8, France; DEA in French Philosophy, Babes-Bolyai University; BA in Philosophy, BBU. Authored studies for academic journals and international conferences on International Relations, Islamic Studies, History of the Middle East; members of various academic bodies (e.g. Cercle des Chercheurs sur le Moyen-Orient/ Middle East Researchers, Paris – Bruxelles).

International Economic Research Director – Prof. Radu MUȘETESCU is the Director of the International Economic Relations Department at Bucharest University of Economic Studies (ASE). He is a member of the Director Board in the Romanian Society of Economy (SOREC), member of the Romanian Association for the Promotion of Critical Infrastructure Protection (ARPIC), and the Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists (ACAMS), also a reviewer for the Romanian Journal of European Affairs.

He holds a Ph.D. in International Economic Relations on “Strategic alliances between companies at international level”. He authored studies for academic journals and international conferences, university courses, and researches within his areas of interest, which cover topics like international negotiation, banking, economic affairs, and financial operations in the Islamic world.

Strategic Analyst and Project Manager – Răzvan MUNTEANU holds a Ph.D. in Middle East studies and authored several books and articles in the field of political science and international relations. His research areas include geopolitics, foreign affairs, and security studies and the main topics of interest related to MENA are especially the Persian Gulf region, Turkey, Egypt, Syria, Jordan, and Israel. He is also the General Director of the Romanian publication, and President of the Romanian think-tank Chamber of Excellence in International Affairs (CEIA).

Senior Researcher – Iulian MAREȘ holds a BA in Sociology and a MA in European Studies and Community Law. His work experience covers both the fields of journalism and banking. He has been involved in the organizing teams of various conferences and workshops addressing the Middle East and Africa region, with a focus on topics related to international business and economics. His current research interests follow the guidelines of good governance and sustainable development in the MENA region, also in the Balkans.

Junior Researcher – Racha AWADA is a junior researcher and associate fellow of MEPEI focusing on the Lebanon Domestic and Foreign Policies. She has a MA in Global Diplomacy at SOAS – University of London. Her dissertation examined how Iran was able to sustain both international and regional pressures using a defensive realist framework. She has a BA in Political Science from the Lebanese American University. Her specializations are in Middle East politics and security studies.

Junior Researcher – Alessandro RICCI is Associated Junior Researcher at MEPEI. He holds a MA in Sciences of Languages, History, and Cultures of Mediterranean and Islamic Countries at the University of Naples “l’Orientale”. His primary academic interests are Middle East and Mediterranean politics, political Islam, and international relations. Currently, he is enrolled in a Second Level Master’s Degree in Geopolitics and Global Security at the “Sapienza” University of Rome.

Junior ResearcherDaria Miruna CONSTANTINESCU is an undergraduate student at the University of Kent, studying Politics and International Relations. Her interests lie in human rights, how they are treated and respected in the modern world. She has also conducted research and is interested in the processes of conflict resolution, peacekeeping and peacebuilding, and how humans are impacted by war. Daria is an active member of advocacy groups for human rights including Amnesty International.

Junior Researcher – Dan DUȚU holds a BA in Security Studies from the Faculty of Political Science, University of Bucharest, with a thesis focused on ”Radicalization and de-radicalization of ISIS members”. He is currently pursuing a MA in International Public Affairs at the Faculty of Political Science, University of Bucharest. He has been involved in organizing conferences and workshops as a member of MEPEI. His research interests are related to Middle East geopolitics and security dynamics of the region, as well as to radicalization and de-radicalization of Islamist extremists.