Timur Kuran

Member, Advisory Council
Timur Kuran

Timur Kuran is a professor of economics and political science and is the Gorter Family Professor of Islamic Studies at Duke University.

His most recent book is on the historical reasons why the Middle East is the world’s most repressive region: Freedoms Delayed: The Political Legacy of Islamic Law in the Middle East (forthcoming in early 2023).  Among his other publications are 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 Private Truths, Public Lies: The Social Consequences of Preference Falsification (Harvard University Press),  all translated into multiple languages. The last book provides a theory of how preference falsification, the act of misrepresenting one’s wants under perceived social pressures, shapes collective decisions, orients structural change, sustains social stability, distorts human knowledge, and conceals political possibilities. He is at work on a sequel to this book, which focuses on the role that preference falsification plays in political polarization in the United States and elsewhere.

Kuran currently directs the Association for Analytic Learning about Islam and Muslim Societies (AALIMS); co-edits a book series for Cambridge University Press, Economics, Choice and Society; co-edits the Journal of Comparative Economics; and serves on numerous editorial boards.

Kuran earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Princeton University and a Master of Arts degree and Ph.D. from Stanford University,  all in economics.

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