Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law Logo Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law

You are here: Institute People Academic Staff et al. Tutunji, Tarek

Tarek Tutunji

PhD, MA, Senior Research Fellow
Tel. +49 (6221) 482-291

Main Fields of Research:

Disinformation; Informal Institutions; Covert Action in the Cold War; International Relations Theory

Academic Career:

MPIL, Senior Research Fellow with Borderlines Research Group (Since December 2020)

University of Göttingen, Lecturer (2020-2021)

Johns Hopkins University, Dean's Teaching Fellow (2016-2018)

Johns Hopkins University, Doctoral Fellowship (2011-2019)

American University of Beirut, Lecturer (Summer 2011, 2012, 2013)



Dr. Tarek Tutunji's research focuses on the role of informal institutions in world politics. His theoretical approach is informed by a mix of Practice Theory and English School approaches to international institutions. His dissertation examined the emergence of informal rules around propaganda and covert action during the Cold War. His current work looks into  the emerging European regulatory framework to respond to the malicious manipulation of social media.



Johns Hopkins University, Ph.D., Political Science (2019)

American University of Beirut, M.A., Political Science (High Distinction)  (2011)

American University of Beirut, B.A., Political Science (Distinction) (2008)

Recent Publications

  • Teaching Critical Understandings of Realism through Historical War Simulations. In: PS: Politics and Political Science 51/2, 440-444 (2018). doi: (with Elizabeth Mendenhall).


06 Sep 2021

The Beirut Port Blast and the Potential for Victim Redress

The presentation provides an update on the status of the investigation into the Beirut Port Blast of August 4, 2020. The presentation goes over the blast's details, the investigations' proceedings thus far, the various strategies used to disrupt the investigation, and finally, potential options for victim redress. Watch the video on the MPIL's youtube channel

18 Feb 2021

Theory Talks: Afropessimism

A discussion around Frank Wilderson's 2020 book "Afropessimism".

22 Mar 2021

The Digital Services Act (DSA) and Digital Markets Act (DMA)

An overview of the proposed regulation by the European Commission.

01 Sep 2018

Informal and Tacit: The Institution of Covert Action

Paper presented at APSA 2018


Winter 2021

Eurocentrism and International Political Theory

Summer 2020

Eurocentrism and non-Western Approaches to World Politics

Fall 2018, Spring 2019

Democracy and Lies

Winter 2018

International Relations through Comics

Fall 2016, Fall 2017

Covert Action in International Relations

Participation in Conferences at Home and Abroad

American Political Science Association Annual Meeting, Boston, 30.08.2018 - 02.09.2018

International Studies Association Annual Convention, Baltimore, 22.02.2017 - 25.02.2017

International Studies Association Annual Convention, Atlanta, 16.05.2016 - 19.05.2016

International Studies Association Annual Convention, New Orleans, 18.02.2015 - 21.02.2015

International Studies Association Annual Convention, San Diego, 01.04.2014 - 04.04.2014


24.02.2021: Curriculum Vitae

tarek-tutunji-cv.pdf (PDF, 119.9 KB)