Dr Manal Shehabi

Dr Manal Shehabi

Profile picture of Manal Shehabi
Academic Visitor
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Dr Manal Shehabi is an Academic Visitor at St Antony’s College. She is Research Associate of the Centre for Climate & Energy Policy of the Crawford School of Public Policy, the Australian National University; Research Associate of the Economic Research Forum (ERF); and Founding Director of SHEER Research & Advisory.

An applied economist, her policy-impacting research interests and expertise concern economic, energy, and resource sustainability and policy in resource-dependent economies, with a focus on the Gulf and the Middle East and North Africa regions. She publishes in high-impact journals, books, and policy reports. 

Her research has three main streams. The first focuses on quantifying economic-energy linkages and policy impacts in petrostates in the Middle East and North Africa region, taking into account the domestic political economy that determined economic, industrial, and labor structures. This research, which employs macroeconomic modeling with political economy analysis, made important contributions to the understanding and modeling of energy and economic sustainability and policy alternatives in MENA petrostates facing oil price volatility, diversification, and energy transitions.  It addressed the under-researched aspects of oligopolistic structures, economic efficiency, expatriate labor, and subsidy reform. The second research theme builds expands the first to and examine impacts of energy transitions and response measures to climate change on developing countries, considering people in vulnerable situations (including women and low-income households).  The third theme expands the economic-environment-energy nexuses, focusing on economic viability of decarbonization pathways and pro-sustainability industrial and fiscal policy. This work covers green and blue hydrogen in low-cost producing Gulf states and industrial decarbonization.

Dr Shehabi’s research impacts policy, aided by professional experience in public policy and industry.  She was invited to add insights from her research at policymaking institutions, and her research has been drawn upon by policymakers and featured in the media.  She constructed an economic model for policymaking in Kuwait, delivered capacity building to economic and climate policymakers, and was lead author on policy briefs to T7 (G7) and T20 (G20). She was Contributing Author to the IPCC Special Report on the Ocean & Cryosphere (6th Assm.), Kuwait Energy Outlook 2020, and a report to the UNFCCC on assessing impacts of response measures in developing countries UNFCCC, presented at COP26. She was an OIES reviewer of the White Paper for a National Hydrogen Strategy in Kuwait, and advised on guidance for hydrogen trade in Europe.  She is a consultant to the IEA and the UNFCCC, and an Advisory Board Member of EFI-KAPSARC joint energy transitions research project.

Previously, she was Senior Research Fellow and OIES-KFAS Research Fellow at Oxford Institute for Energy Studies, doctoral researcher at University of Western Australia, academic visitor in Kuwait, Germany, and the UK, as well as Research Assistant at Texas A&M University.  She taught introductory & advanced economics courses and conducted capacity building for economic and climate policymakers in Gulf countries and beyond. She received various honors, awards, and grants.

Beyond academia, Dr. Shehabi gained professional experience in economic consulting with a focus on energy, petrochemicals, and mining companies, and in business public policy in the US, Australia, the Middle East, and Europe.  She frequently advises policymakers and firms. Her language capabilities include Arabic, English, French, Spanish, and Mandarin Chinese.

Selected Publications: 

Peer-Refereed Articles

  1. Shehabi M. (2023). Energy Transitions and Adaptation to the Post-Oil Era. in The Accelerating Transformation of the Arab World Project. Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, funded by the Luce Foundation. (Forthcoming).
  2. Shehabi, M. (2022). Quantifying Long-term Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic and Oil Price Shocks on Gulf oil Economies, Economic Modelling. Access here.
    • Other version: Shehabi, M. (2021). Quantifying Long-term Impacts of COVID-19 and Oil Price Shocks in a Gulf oil Economy. OIES Paper 25. Access here. 
  3. Shehabi, M. & Dally, B. (2021). Opportunity and Viability of Green Hydrogen in Kuwait: A Preliminary Assessment.  International Association of Energy Economics Working Papers, Working Paper No. 21-536. Access here.  Under Review.
  4. Schumacher, I., Shehabi, M. et al. (2020). Perspectives on the economics of the environment in the shadow of coronavirus. “Novel policy research on the resource exporters-energy policy nexus during the Coronavirus pandemic.” Environmental and Resource Economics, 76, 447–517. DOI Access here
  5. Shehabi, M. (2020). Diversification effects of energy subsidy reform in oil exporters: Illustrations from Kuwait, Energy Policy, 123, 110966. DOI Access here.
    • Other version: Shehabi, M. (2019). Diversification in Gulf hydrocarbon economies and interactions with energy subsidy reform: Lessons from Kuwait, OIES Paper: MEP 23. Oxford Institute for Energy Studies. Oxford: UK. DOI Access here.
  6. Shehabi, M. (2020). Is energy subsidy reform in an oil-exporting small economy beneficial to trade? Illustrations from Kuwait, World Trade Review, 19, s36–s61. DOI Access here.
    • Other version: Shehabi, M. (2019). Is energy subsidy reform in an oil-exporting small economy beneficial to trade?  Illustrations from Kuwait, OIES Paper: MEP 21. Oxford Institute for Energy Studies. Oxford: UK. DOI Access here.    
  7. Shehabi, M. (2020). Quantifying Dutch disease effects and asymmetry in economic responses to oil price volatility in Kuwait. OIES Paper: MEP 24. Oxford Institute for Energy Studies. Oxford: UK. DOI Access here.
  8. Shehabi, M. (2017). Assessing Kuwait energy pricing reform, OIES Paper: MEP 17. Oxford Institute for Energy Studies. Oxford: UK.  DOI Access here.

Refereed Book Chapters

  1. Shehabi, M. (2020)Redefining Economic Sustainability in Resource-Rich States: Comparative Lessons. In Luciani, G., & Moerenhout, T. (eds.), When Can Oil Economies be Deemed Sustainable?. The Political Economy of the Middle East. Palgrave Macmillan, Singapore. PelgraveDOI Access here.  
  2. Hilmi N., Farahmand S., & Shehabi, M. (2020)Climate Agreements Implementation through Energy Transition and Economic Diversification in Kuwait. In Economic Development in the Gulf Cooperation Council Countries, From Rentier States to Diversified Economies, Miniaoui, H. (ed.), Gulf Studies, Vol: 1, Springer.
  3. Shehabi, M. (2018). Maintaining the Order: Contemporary Kuwaitisation Dynamics and their Historical Perspectives. The Gulfization of the Arab World, Exeter Critical Gulf Series. vol.  1, Jones M. O., Porter, R., & Valeri M. eds., Gerlach Press: Berlin.

Refereed Workshops Publication (Select)

  1. Shehabi, M. (2022). Managing the Process of a Just Transition: Examples from Kuwait.  Training presented at the UNFCCC-ILO Event of MENA Climate Week 2022. Dubai, UAE.  Access here.
  2. Shehabi, M. (2022). Climate Policy Perspectives and Just Energy Transitions in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Region: Setting the Scene.  Training presented at the UNFCCC-ILO Event of MENA Climate Week 2022. Dubai, UAE.  Access here.
  3. Shehabi, M. (2021). Economic Diversification and Low Carbon Development in Resources and Hydrocarbon Dependent Economies.  Presentation at the SBSTA and SBI Technical expert meeting on practical approaches to economic diversification and transformation organized by the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).  Virtual. Access here.
  4. Shehabi, M. (2021). The Case of Hydrogen in the Gulf States: Opportunities and Challenges.  Paper presented at the OIES-KFAS Workshop 2021.  Oxford, UK.  Access here.

Policy Reports & Articles (Select)

  1. Dally, B., Shehabi, M. et al. (2023).  Decarbonization Pathways of the Cement Industry in Saudi Arabia. King Abdullah University for Science and Technology. Forthcoming.
  2. Shehabi, M., Aruth, L., Handajani Soejachmoen, M., Jotzo, F., Hondo, D., & Sonobe, T. (2022). International Partnerships for Circular Economy, Energy Transition, and Investments. Policy Brief 2022 T7 Germany, Submitted to 2022 Group of 7 (G7) Germany. Access here.
  3. Shehabi, M., Luciani, G., Mansouri, N., Westphal, K., Fattouh, B., Shihab-Eldin, A. (2021). International Cooperation to Accelerate Development and Deployment of Circular Carbon Economy, Policy Brief T20 Italy- Task Force 2: Climate Change, Sustainable Energy & Environment. Access here.
  4. McDonald, S. Shutes, L., Thierfelder, K. & Shehabi, M (2020). Assessing Impacts of the Implementation of Response Measures: The case study of Senegal and Kenya: A Computable General Equilibrium AnalysisPilot Project Policy Report, Bonn: United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).  Access here. 
  5. Al-Abdullah, Y. M.; Shehabi, M.; & Sreekanth, K. J. (2020). Kuwait Energy Outlook 2020: Current Policies and Necessity of Reform. Kuwait City: Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research. Access here. 
  6. Shehabi, M. (2019). Is Energy Subsidy Reform in an Oil-Exporting Small Economy Beneficial to Trade?  Illustrations from Kuwait, Non-Technical Commentary. Oxford Institute for Energy Studies. Oxford: UK. Access here.
  7. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)- IPCC Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate (SROCC) (2019). Contributing Author to Chapter 5: Changing Ocean, Marine Ecosystems, and Dependent Communities. Access here.
  8. Hilmi, N.; Cinar, M.; Djoundourian, S.; Farahmand, S.; Greene, C.; Hassan, A.; Lam, V.; Maliki, S.; Mulsow, S.; Safa, A.; Sameti, M.; Shehabi, M. (2019). Policy brief: Ocean Sustainability and Ocean Economics in Developing Countries, International Hydrographic Organization, Principality of Monaco.
  9. Shehabi, M. (2019). Slowing the pump?  Why GCC Economies have a diversified base but remain overly hydrocarbon-dependent. Oxford Energy Forum Journal; Oxford Institute for Energy Studies, 118, 8- 14. OIES: UK. Access here.
  10. Shehabi, M. (2017). Challenges of Kuwaiti Energy Pricing Reform in Response to Petroleum Price Volatility. Oxford Energy Forum Journal; Oxford Institute for Energy Studies, 108, 25- 30. OIES: UK. Access here.