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Qatar: Politics and the Challenges of Development

Matthew Gray
Qatar: Politics and the Challenges of Development
ISBN: 978-1-58826-928-7
ISBN: 978-1-62637-078-4
2013/271 pages/LC: 2013001380
"Provide[s] much-needed and very useful help for understanding the rise of Qatar to international prominence."—Michael Herb, Perspectives on Politics

"A very well-conceived book and a product of solid academic research."—Erdem Tunçer, Perceptions

"Gray's work makes a valuable contribution to the literature on modern rentierism in the Arab Gulf states, and enhances our understanding of Qatar's outsized role in the international arena."—Jocelyn Sage Mitchell, Review of Middle East Studies

"A rich analysis of the major developments that characterized the rule of Emir Hamad (1995 - 2013) and that frame the political legacy that Emir Tamim inherits."—Kristian Coates Ulrichsen, International Affairs

"An excellent analysis of current politics and policy in Qatar….  While noting the similarities between Qatar and the other GCC states, Gray concentrates on the dynamics unique to Qatar…. His book should be welcomed by anyone interested in Qatar, in any of the Arab Gulf states, and more broadly, in the policy issues that accompany oil."—Jill Crystal, Auburn University


A small isthmus in the central Gulf, with barely 300,000 citizens and a total population of 1.7 million, Qatar has risen rapidly from obscurity to become the world's wealthiest country per capita. Matthew Gray traces this spectacular rise, exploring the development of Qatar's economy, the patterns of its politics, its role on the world stage, and its prospects for the future.


Matthew Gray is senior lecturer in the Centre for Arab and Islamic Studies at the Australian National University. He is author of Conspiracy Theories in the Arab World: Sources and Politics.


  • The Transformation of Qatar.
  • The Historical Context.
  • The Political Order.
  • Oil, Gas, and Rents.
  • Energy-Driven Economic Diversification.
  • The Strategy of National Branding.
  • Qatar in the International Arena.
  • Challenges for the Future.