Oil & the Middle East Programme

The Oil and the Middle East Programme of the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies was established in 2009. It is dedicated to the advanced study of modern-day oil markets and of the economics of natural resource wealth. With historical focus on the resource-rich economies of the Middle East, the Programme also focuses on major non-OPEC producing regions such as Russia, and emerging energy markets such as China and India.

The programme’s research activities centre around its three main thematic branches:

  • Oil markets and their financialisation

The key area of the programme’s research concentrates on global oil market dynamics, such as oil price behaviour, benchmark developments, fundamentals research, the impact of unconventional energy sources and of biofuels on oil market dynamics, producer-consumer relations, and oil market financialisation hypotheses.

  • The economics of resource-rich economies and the Middle East

The programme’s second key area of research concentrates on the management of natural resource wealth within resource-rich economies, including resource-based development strategies and economic growth, ways of distributing natural resource rents, and domestic demand growth challenges.

  • Development of emerging energy markets

In response to the rapid rise in energy consumption outside traditional OECD energy consumers, the Oil and the Middle East Programme analyses demand and supply patterns in emerging energy markets, including Russia, India, China, Latin America and Africa.

Research is disseminated via a dedicated research paper series, short energy comments and contributions to academic journals and specialised publications, in addition to a book series published by Oxford University Press. Members of programme staff have also been involved in  a range of international publications, including the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the International Energy Agency (IEA) and the International Energy Forum (IEF). The Programme’s research group is composed of core staff, and draws on a network of external contributors from a wide range of disciplinary and industrial backgrounds.


Latest from the Oil & Middle East Programme

The Future of the Canadian Oil Sands – Growth potential of a unique resource amidst regulation, egress, cost, and price uncertainty

Published: 9th February 2016 | By:

Though the Canadian oil sands may have been overlooked in recent years, due to the impressive story of North American tight oil growth, their massive bitumen deposits still comprise a major portion of the world’s crude resources. With an estimated 170 billion barrels of economically proven reserves (amidst the 1.7-2.5 trillion barrels of oil in […]

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Categories / Country and Regional Studies, Energy Economics, Energy Policy, Oil, Oil & Middle East Programme, Papers, Papers

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Russia and OPEC – Uneasy Partners

Published: 8th February 2016 | By: , Bassam Fattouh

On Wednesday January 27th Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak met with a group of Russian oil companies to discuss the domestic and global energy markets, following which he announced that Russia would be prepared to discuss an output cut of 3-5% at a meeting with OPEC in February. On the face of it this would […]

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Categories / Energy Comments, Energy Comments, Energy Policy, Oil, Oil & Middle East Programme

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Under the Mountains – Kurdish Oil and Regional Politics

Published: 18th January 2016 | By:

The development of major oil and gas reserves in the autonomous Kurdish Region of Iraq (KRI) is a recent phenomenon which has attracted major media and industry interest. It represents the rare case, in recent history, of the discovery of a large new onshore conventional petroleum province. The Kurdistan Region Government (KRG)’s formulation of its […]

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Categories / Country and Regional Studies, Energy Policy, Oil, Oil & Middle East Programme, Papers, Papers

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