Trita Parsi, President, National Iranian American Council
Reza Marashi, Research Director, National Iranian American Council
Daniel Levy, Head of the Middle East and North Africa Programme, ECFR
The election of Hasan Rouhani in June 2013 has undoubtedly brought about a significant shift in Iranian foreign policy. The previous confrontational narrative of Iranian hardliners has given way to a team espousing a positive-sum narrative of collaboration with the West which has resulted in a landmark nuclear deal within six months. This deal has certainly gone some way to disprove a core tenant of the hardline narrative – the idea that the West is inherently against the scientific advancement of Iran. However, a new report by the National Iranian American Council (NIAC) proposes that the initiation of a number of scientific projects between Iran and the West, away from the nuclear field, would help in further disproving this myth and consequently further push domestic hardliners to the margins.
NIAC President Trita Parsi and Research Director Reza Marashi, will present their research on the changes in the Iranian narrative over the last six months and outline their proposals regarding scientific collaboration. If successful, they argue that such a project could have an impact on Iran's conduct well beyond the nuclear issue.
Trita Parsi is the President of the National Iranian American Council and an expert on US-Iranian relations, Iranian foreign politics, and the geopolitics of the Middle East. He has served as an adjunct professor of International Relations at Johns Hopkins University, an adjunct scholar at the Middle East Institute and as a Policy Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for the Scholars in Washington. Parsi is the author of Treacherous Alliance: The Secret Dealings of Iran, Israel and the United States and A Single Roll of the Dice-Obama's Diplomacy with Iran.
Reza Marashi is the Research Director at the National Iranian American Council. Prior to that, Marashi worked for four years in the Office of Iranian Affairs at the U.S. Department of State. Before joining the State Department, he was an analyst at the Institute for National Strategic Studies covering China-Middle East issues, and a Tehran-based private strategic consultant on Iranian political and economic risk.
Daniel Levy is the Director of the Middle East and North Africa Programme at ECFR.