Asan in the News

[Dong-A Ilbo] 2014-05-23

Chung Se-jin, The Leaderless SNS Revolution: The Authoritarian U-turn and Democracy’s Failure


On Friday, May 23, 2014, Dr. Jang Ji-Hyang, head of the Middle East and North Africa Program, was interviewed in a Dong-A Ilbo article on the role of social networking services in the Arab Spring of 2011. Dr. Jang discussed how the absence of leadership to fill the void during the revolutions allowed authoritarian regimes to re-assert themselves in different guises.


The article also featured data questioning the importance of SNS as a causal variable in the lead-up to the Arab Spring based on findings in the Asan Institute’s co-edited book by Dr. Jang and Clement Henry, The Arab Spring: Will It Lead to Democratic Transitions? (Asan Institute 2012, Palgrave Macmillan 2013) 

(This article is in Korean).

About Experts

Jang Ji-Hyang
Jang Ji-Hyang

Center for Regional Studies

Dr. JANG Ji-Hyang is a senior fellow and director of the Center for Middle East and North Africa at the Asan Institute for Policy Studies. Dr. Jang served as a policy advisor on Middle East issues to South Korea’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (2012-2018). Previously, Dr. Jang taught comparative and Middle East politics at Seoul National University, Yonsei University, Ewha Woman’s University, and the Hankuk University of Foreign Studies. Her research interests include political economy of the Middle East and North Africa, political Islam, comparative democratization, terrorism, and state-building. Dr. Jang is the author of numerous books and articles, including The Essential Guide to the Middle East (Sigongsa 2023 in Korean), The Arab Spring: Will It Lead to Democratic Transitions?(with Clement M. Henry (eds.), Palgrave Macmillan 2013), “Disaggregated ISIS and the New Normal of Terrorism” (Asan Issue Brief 2016), “Islamic Fundamentalism” (International Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences 2008) and a Korean translation of Fawaz Gerges’ Journey of the Jihadist: Inside Muslim Militancy (Asan Institute 2011). Dr. Jang received a B.A. in Turkish studies and M.A. in political science from the Hankuk University of Foreign Studies and her Ph.D. in political science from the University of Texas at Austin.