Staff at the Kenyon Institute


Dr Elian Weizman

Dr Mandy Turner

Director of the Kenyon Institute (

Mandy Turner is a social scientist who works on the political economy of development in war-torn societies with a country focus on the occupied Palestinian territory, but also comparatively with other conflicts. Before joining the CBRL as director of the Kenyon Institute in 2012, Mandy was a lecturer in conflict resolution in the Department of Peace Studies, University of Bradford. From 2013-16 she was a senior visiting fellow with the Middle East Centre, London School of Economics, and is now a visiting fellow with the Department of Politics and International Studies at the University of Warwick. Her research has been funded by the ESRC, the British Academy, the CBRL and the Leverhulme Trust, and she has conducted policy-based research for the UN and governments. From 2006-2015, Mandy co-edited the Taylor and Francis-published journal 'International Peacekeeping', and was a founding member of the Brill-published journal 'Historical Materialism: Research in Critical Marxist Theory'. She holds a BSc, MSc and PhD from the LSE. Mandy retains her Scottish accent, as she was born and raised in a mining village near Edinburgh.


Dr. Toufic Haddad

Deputy Director of the Kenyon Institute  (

Toufic Haddad is a social scientist whose work focuses on the political economy of development and conflict in the Middle East, and Israel-Palestine in particular. Before joining CBRL as its Deputy Director in October 2018, Toufic had an eclectic professional and academic career working as a journalist, editor, publisher, researcher, and consultant. He has a BA in Philosophy and Middle East Studies from Trinity College [CT, USA]; an MA from New York University (Near East Studies and Journalism); and, a PhD from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London (Development Studies). His PhD was transformed into Palestine Ltd: Neoliberalism and Nationalism in the Occupied Territory, published by I.B. Tauris in 2016, with paperback edition out in 2018. He is the co-author of two additional books, and has extensively spoken and published on the Israel-Palestine conflict, featured in an assortment of books, print, television and online media, both academic and popular. His research has been sponsored by London School of Economics’ Middle East Center, the Arab Council for Social Science (ACSS), the Palestinian American                                                              Research Center (PARC), and CBRL. He has also lectured at SOAS, King’s College London, and Birzeit University.


Maida Smeir

Maida Smeir

KI Administrator (

On your arrival at the Kenyon, it is likely that you will have the good fortune of being greeted by Maida Smeir, the Administrator. A spirited daughter of Beit Hanina, Maida is as formidable in her business dealings as she is charming in the hospitality she conveys towards guests. After obtaining a BA from Bethlehem University in Hotel Management, Maida has enjoyed working for the British Council, a year sojourn in the US and the birth of her (now nine year-old) daughter, Daniella. Since joining the Kenyon Institute in 2005, Maida has remained a precious figure of stability in the dynamic landscape of an international research centre. In her limited free time, Maida expertly engages in the art of traditional Palestinian embroidery and on occasion, indulges her fondness for Chinese cuisine.


Hussein Ghaith


Hussein Ghaith

KI Librarian 

Hussein Ghaith (Abu Hani) was born in Jerusalem in 1942. After studying Commerce in Kalandia and Alexandria, he was soon poached by the UN and British Council to be sent on library training courses in Alexandria, Beirut, Amman and universities across England. In free afternoons between 1975 and 1980, Hussein completed a BA in English, and Diploma in Education at Bethlehem University, Aberdeen. In 1989, he was made supervisor of all the UN school libraries in the West Bank - responsible for over 100 collections. He has written nine books of Palestinian bibliographies, and has translated parts of the Dewey Decimal classification system into Arabic for local librarians. Hussein, who joined the Kenyon Institute in 2003, is married to a retired English teacher and has four children. He is an expert basketball player.


Sami Salah


Sami Salah
KI Caretaker

Sami Salah (Abu Saif) is a true Sheikh Jarrah man, having been born just down the hill from the Kenyon Institute in 1960. He briefly studied in Egypt, before returning to Jerusalem to complete a course in technical drawing. After the first Intifada, Sami began to work with metal - and his skills soon became known across the city. Sami came to the Kenyon Institute in 2002 to build a door; the end product would not look out of place in a Bank of England vault. He now looks after all aspects of the Kenyon Institute's infrastructure, from plumbing to computer networking. He also cooks a fantastic barbeque.