Saker El Nour

Project title: Environmental Conflicts in Egypt:A political ecology approach

Abstract: This project seeks to understand the dynamics of environmental conflicts and their relations with the rise of ‘authoritarian populism’ in Egypt. Through collecting and analyzing the press archives, human rights reports, in-depth interviews, and specific case studies, we aim to map the evolution of the forms of movement in an authoritarian capitalist context. We assume that the ruling authoritarian capitalism in Egypt imposes a reconfiguration of the forms of the movement and the new waves of protest focus on issues of daily life and the local socio-environmental crises. Through this study, we try to use the theories and methods of local political ecology to understand and analyze the social and spatial dynamics of the environmental protests in Egypt.


Saker El Nour is a sociologist working on rural will-bine, environment, and agrarian issues in the Arab countries. After receiving a bachelor’s degree in agricultural production from south valley University in Upper Egypt. He received a diploma in human development from the National Planning Institute in Cairo and then an MSc in Rural Sociology from Minya University (Upper-Egypt). El Nour earned his Ph.D. degree in 2013 from Paris – Nanterre University with his sociological research on rural poverty dynamics in Egypt. Following his doctoral studies El Nour obtained two postdoctoral contracts, the first at the American University of Beirut (AUB) in a research project entitled „Palimpsest of agrarian transformation“. The second postdoctoral contract was at (EHESS-MuCEM) to conduct a research project about „Land, work and society: a study of social and ecological transformation in rural Egypt“. His research interests include Poverty and Marginalization Dynamics, Access to Natural Resources, Resistances, Uprisings and Peasant Movements, Development and Environment Changes, Agroecology and Food Sovereignty. Between 2009 and 2019 El Nour conducted fieldwork research in Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Sudan, and Tunisia. He published for both specialized and general audiences in French as well as in English and Arabic. His most recent academic article Grabbing from below: a study of land reclamation in Egypt, published in 2019 at vol. 46, no 162 of the Review of African Political Economy. In 2017 he published his first book Land, peasant, and investor: A study on the agrarian and peasantry questions in EgyptDar El-Maraya, Cairo. And his co-authored book,Mrahrah Bread: Political Economy of Food Sovereignty in Egypt is published this year (2021) with Dar Safsafa in Cairo. Over the past five years, he wrought news reporters on rural, agricultural, water, and food issues at Arabic independent media like Mada MasrAl-manasaandJadaliyya.

Abstract of my coauthor book published few weeks ago (the book funded by Roda)

Mohamed Ramadan & Saker El Nour, MrahrahBread: the political economy of Food Sovereignty in Egypt, Dar Sefsafa, Cairo, 2021. 236p (In Arabic)

This book aims to analyze the practical manifestations and challenges of food sovereignty in Egypt. The study based on fieldwork in two villages in Upper Egypt. Using agrarian political economy and small farmers‘ livelihood dynamics, we analyze the intersection and divergence between local and global food systems. This raises questions on what food is produced, where, how, by home, at what scale, and policy coherence. policy coherence. The results of the study deep our understanding of food sovereignty at the local level and launch a debate on the alternative sustainable food system in Egypt. 

All Publications from Saker El Nour: