January 31, 2019


The Center for Strategic Studies (CSS) at the University of Jordan (UJ) ranked the top Think Tank in the Middle East and North Africa for the third year in a row. CSS, also ranked number (128) among the most important Think Tanks in the world (Non-US) maintaining its rank since 2017.


The report classifies research centers according to the following set of indicators: managing and organizing resources, intellectual and scientific production, influence on policies and trends, and the national attitude towards them. Furthermore, the report arranges them on the level of region and world, as well as according to their substantive work and production fields.



First: Global Ranking Category(General)

(6291)Centers from all over the world have been evaluated. CSS has been in the list of top think tanks worldwide (Non-US) for the third year in a row , ranking 128 this year.


The most important 10 research centers of the world according to the report were:

1- Brookings Institution (United State).

2- French Institute of International Relations (France)

3- Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (United States)

4- Bruegel (Belgium)

5- Chatham House (United Kingdom / Britain).

6- Fundacao Getulio Vargas (FGV) (Brazil)

7- Heritage Foundation (United States)

8- RAND Europe (United Kingdom)

9- International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) (United Kingdom)

10- Center for American Progress (CAP) (United States)


Second: Global Ranking by field


The report classifies research centers according to a range of thematic fields and indicators: defense and national security, economic policies, education, energy, environment, foreign policy and international relations, health, international development, international economy, science and technology, Social policies, good governance and transparency.


1: Defense and National Security

The Center for Strategic Studies (CSS), was ranked 52 in the world in the field of Defence and National Security.


2:Foreign Policy and International Relations

In the field of foreign policy and international relations, the Center for Strategic Studies (CSS) was ranked (36) compared with the previous year where it was 41 making progress by 5 positions.


The report by the University of Pennsylvania, which has been released annually since 2007, reflects the growing importance of thought and study centers which work on bridging the gap between knowledge and public policy. As a result, these centers play an essential role in the development and planning of public policies.


Despite the modest results of the Jordanian and Arab centers in the global ranking, it clearly seems that they are beginning to establish a regional and global presence. Accordingto the Middle East centers list, a group of Arab centers from Egypt, Morocco, Lebanon, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Libya, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates and Iraq are achieving prominence.


The think tanks represent an advanced and expensive industry in thought, creativity, and scientific measurement of overall trends as well as scientific research.


The meager percentages of national outputs that the Arab world spends on scientific research reflect the main obstacles that hinder the ability of these centers to work and produce. In addition, of course, to their diminished presence in education, planning, decision-making, forming public policies and public opinion, and in political, intellectual, cultural and general trends of the citizens towards the studies and scientific research, as well as their importance as a source of knowledge which builds skills, attitudes and ideas among society.


The think tanks have turned into an urgent necessity in light of the growing role of knowledge and creativity in work, the economy, and with the rise of the information technologies that cover the world today.



The importance of this think tanks is multiplying to keep up with the rapid changes in knowledge, technology and labor market trends.




Third : Regional RankingCategory

The Center for Strategic Studies (CSS) has been ranked for the third year in a row as the top Think Tank in the Middle East and North Africa. The region includes the Arab countries, Israel, Turkey, Cyprus and Iran. Consequently, CSS is the first center in Jordan and in the Arab world.


The most important 10 research centers in the Middle East according to this year report were as follows:

1- The Center for Strategic Studies (CSS) at the University of Jordan (UJ).

2- Institute for National Security Studies (INSS) (Israel)

3- Carnegie Middle East Center (Lebanon).

4- Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies (ACPSS) (Egypt).

5- Al Jazeera Centre for Studies (AJCS) (Qatar).

6- Brookings Doha Center (Qatar).

7- UAE Policy Center (United Arab Emirates)

8-OCP Policy Center (Moroco)

9- Arabian Gulf Center for Iranian Studies (Saudi Arabia).

10- The Israeli Democratic Institute



The report covered 6 think tanks from Jordan. Five other Jordanian centers:Al-Quds Center for Political Studies (ranked 39),Arab Thought Forum (ranked 41),Al Rai Center for Studies (ranked 73), Arab Institute for Security Studies (ranked 74), Royal Institute for Inter-Faith Studies (ranked 86).




Changes in classification for 2019


The University of Pennsylvania's evaluators have introduced a new category next year to honor outstanding positions, and to give other centers the chance to be in the first place.

The change is the creation of a new category called "Distinguished think tanks centers of excellence" and will enter this category all the Centers that was ranked in the first place for the years (2018,2017,2016) respectively , remaining in this special category in the next report .Further more it will not be subject to evaluation the next five years in its field of excellence .Thus CSS has acquired the right to be in the category of "Distinguished think tanks centers of excellence" for the next five years (2023-2019).