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Building a Better Lebanon

This initiative brings together leading economists, policymakers, Middle East experts, scholars and Lebanese representatives from the private sector to examine measures that can restore confidence in the economy and conditions for achieving stability and equitable growth over the next decade. 

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Lebanon is on the brink and has been for a while. A confluence of government malpractice, economic instability and external interference has driven Lebanon's devastating crisis. Without significant change, there are concerns it could persist indefinitely. It is to this end that the “Building a Better Lebanon” initiative is being organized in cooperation with knowledge partners that include the Middle East Program of the Wilson Center, the Atlantic Council and the Italian Institute for International Political Studies.

The project, sponsored by Beirut-based Al-Iktissad Wal-Aamal, will bring together leading economists, policymakers, Middle East experts, scholars and Lebanese representatives from the private sector, civil society and the diaspora to examine measures that can restore confidence in the economy and conditions for achieving stability and equitable growth over the next decade. 

The Report

Read Building a Better Lebanon

In this report, the co-authors explore the best way out of this crisis. Against a general backdrop of weak institutional capacity and growing instability, the authors argue that any reform program for Lebanon should be simple, transparent, and most importantly managed by a credible government of reform. Advocating a combination of measures, they highlight immediate steps needed to stop the financial hemorrhaging of the Lebanese banking system before embarking on a gradual journey toward structural transformation and reform. In the heat of the present crisis, Lebanon must maneuver toward a productive economy away from the dominant financial sector through initiatives supporting business capacity, entrepreneurs, and skills development. If these steps are taken immediately, and throughout the coming political cycle, Lebanon may yet be rescued and put on a path to recovery. 

The Event

Please join us for a virtual conference to mark the launch of a report on this topic co-authored by Harvard Adjunct Professor and Former IMF Economist Rand Ghayad, Wilson Center Middle East Program Chair Ambassador James Jeffrey and Director Merissa Khurma, and Atlantic Council Nonresident Senior Fellow Hung Tran.

Lebanese Protests

Report Launch: Building a Better Lebanon

Join us for a virtual launch of the report! Ambassador James F. Jeffrey, Chair of the Middle East Program, and Giampiero Massolo, President of the Italian Institute for International Political Studies, kick of the event. Our keynote speaker Ambassador David Hale, Distinguished Diplomatic Fellow at the Wilson Center and most recently the Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, will offer his insight and reaction to the report. Hadley Gamble, Reporter and Anchor at CNBC moderates a discussion with the report authors and Mohsin Khan, Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council and Former Middle East and Central Asia Director at the International Monetary Fund.

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