Our team



Lina Abirafeh, Director
Ext. 1359
E-mail: lina.abirafeh@lau.edu.lb

Dr. Lina Abirafeh joined the Institute for Women’s Studies in the Arab World (IWSAW) in 2015. She brings nearly 20 years of experience addressing gender issues in both development and humanitarian settings. Her focus is on gender-based violence in emergency settings - conflict, post-conflict, and natural disaster. She has worked with many UN agencies and international NGOs in countries such as Afghanistan, Central African Republic, Lebanon, Nepal, Papua New Guinea, Haiti, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, amongst others. Dr. Abirafeh has also conducted research trips to Bangladesh, Fiji, Kenya, Singapore, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda on various gender issues and has published much of this work in books and journals. Her work is summarized in her 2015 TEDx talk: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=krSG-RtiWUA

Dr. Abirafeh completed her PhD in 2008 under the auspices of the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) Department of International Development, researching the effects of gender-focused international aid in conflict and post-conflict contexts, with a specific focus on gender-based violence. Her book, “Gender and International Aid in Afghanistan: The Politics and Effects of Intervention”, published in 2009, is available at: http://www.mcfarlandpub.com/book-2.php?id=978-0-7864-4519-6 . She received her Master’s degree in international economics and development from the Johns Hopkins University (JHU) School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS).

About the Staff

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Myriam Sfeir Murad, Assistant Director
Ext. 1288
E-mail: myriam.sfeir@lau.edu.lb

Myriam Sfeir joined the Institute for Women’s Studies in the Arab World (IWSAW) in 1996. She is currently the assistant director of IWSAW. Previously she served as senior managing editor of Al-Raida, the double-blind peer-reviewed journal published by IWSAW. She has worked on several groundbreaking issues of Al-Raida that dealt with various subjects considered taboo in the Arab world (sexuality, honor killings, incarcerated women, homosexuality, etc.). She has also worked extensively on issues related to gender rights and has organized several conferences, film festivals, and lectures at LAU. Myriam is knowledgeable on issues related to human rights, gender-based violence, and sexuality. Myriam earned her Bachelor degree in Philosophy from the American University of Beirut and her Master’s degree in Interdisciplinary Women’s Studies from the University of Warwick, United Kingdom.

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Carol Khater, Program Officer
Ext. 1259
E-mail: carol.khater@lau.edu.lb

Carol Khater is the Program Officer at IWSAW, and works on the Institute’s development projects by conducting training sessions on the use of the Basic Living Skills and the Empowerment of Arab Women through Literacy programs. She is also involved in the development projects that are implemented in the women prisons in Lebanon. Carol is also responsible for organizing some of IWSAW’s activities and events (lectures, conferences, seminars, workshops, roundtables, international women’s day, awareness-raising campaigns). She also represents IWSAW in national and regional conferences and training workshops related to the field of social work and women’s rights. Carol joined the Institute in 2001 as a student assistant and became a full-time staff member in 2008. She obtained her BA in Social Work and her MA in Education from LAU.


Moufeeda Haidar, Administrative Assisstant
Ext. 1275
E-mail: moufeeda.haidar@lau.edu.lb

Moufeeda Haidar holds a Bachelor Degree in Law from the Lebanese University and a certificate of completion of the political preparatory courses for the Lebanese Diplomatic Corps. Moufeeda is currently working at IWSAW focusing on youth engagement. She is responsible for organizing events on campus to  raise awareness and stimulate conversations with students on the most prominent women’s rights violations. Moufeeda is also responsible for the planning and implementation of the Institute’s monthly speaking series, Food 4 Thought, where we provide students with a safe space to voice their opinion and discuss gender issues. Finally, Moufeeda, participated in the Basic Living Skills training workshops, which focused on building the capacities of Syrian and Lebanese women.