Timur Kuran

The Gorter Family Professor of Islamic Studies in Trinity College of Arts and Sciences

External Address: 
234 Social Sciences, Box 90097, Durham, NC 27708
Internal Office Address: 
Box 90097
Phone: 
(919) 660-1800

Timur Kuran is Professor of Economics and Political Science, and Gorter Family Professor of Islamic Studies at Duke University. His research focuses on (1) social change, including the evolution of preferences and institutions, and (2) the economic and political history and modernization of the Middle East. His current projects include a study of the role that the Middle East’s traditional institutions played in its poor political performance, as measured by democratization and human liberties. Among his publications are Private Truths, Public Lies: The Social Consequences of Preference Falsification (Harvard University Press); Islam and Mammon: The Economic Predicaments of Islamism (Princeton University Press); The Long Divergence: How Islamic Law Held Back the Middle East (Princeton University Press); and a tri-lingual edited work that consists of ten volumes, Socio-Economic Life in Seventeenth-century Istanbul: Glimpses from Court Records (İş Bank Publications). After graduating from Robert Academy in Istanbul in 1973, Kuran went on to study economics at Princeton University (AB 1977) and Stanford University (PhD 1982). Between 1982 and 2007 he taught at the University of Southern California. He was also a member of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, the John Olin Visiting Professor at the Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago, and a visiting professor of economics at Stanford University. He currently directs the Association for Analytic Learning about Islam and Muslim Societies (AALIMS); is a member of the Executive Committee of the International Economic Association; edits a book series for Cambridge University Press, serves on numerous editorial boards; and is a member of the Turkish Academy of Sciences. He has served on the World Economic Forum’s Arab World Council.

Education

  • Ph.D., Stanford University 1982
  • M.A., Stanford University 1979

Kuran, T. "Legal Roots of Authoritarian Rule in the Middle East: Civic Legacies of the Islamic Waqf." American Journal of Comparative Law 64, no. 2 (July 1, 2016): 419-454. Full Text

Kuran, T. "A Reply to Muhammad Khan." International Journal of Middle East Studies 22, no. 03 (August 1990): 376-377. Full Text

Economic Freedom and Development in the Muslim World awarded by Georgetown University (Principal Investigator). 2015 to 2017

Religious Freedom in the Islamic World awarded by Georgetown University (Principal Investigator). 2014