NYUAD Institute

The New York University Abu Dhabi Institute is an interdisciplinary center for advanced research, artistic creativity, and public outreach. The Institute sponsors, curates, and coordinates research conferences, workshops, lectures, film series, exhibitions, and performances that address issues relevant to Abu Dhabi, the region, and the world. 

In its location on the NYUAD campus adjacent to the Saadiyat Island Cultural District, the Institute provides an intellectual forum for public talks, dedicated conference spaces, research labs, and workspace for visiting scholars. The Institute brings together faculty, academic researchers, and students from the region and the world, and encourages learning, collaboration, and innovation. 

The NYUAD Institute strengthens intellectual and programmatic links between NYU Abu Dhabi and NYU's renowned graduate and professional schools and research initiatives. At its 19 Washington Square North location, the Institute hosts public events and conferences in New York City.

Maurice Pomerantz
Senior Director, NYUAD Institute


Maurice Pomerantz is Professor of Literature and Arab Crossroads at New York University Abu Dhabi. 

Maurice is a noted expert in the literature of the Abbasid period. He completed his PhD, in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations at the University of Chicago in 2010 under the direction of Prof. Wadād al-Qāḍī. Maurice has traveled, lectured, researched, and taught throughout the Middle East region.

He was a Fulbright Senior scholar in Lebanon and Jordan in 2012-3 and a Member of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton in 2015-2016. Since 2014, Maurice has been an editor of  The Library of Arabic Literature published by NYU Press, a groundbreaking series of facing-page translations of the classic works of the Arabic Literary Heritage.

His first book is entitled Licit Magic: The Life and Letters of al-Ṣāḥib b. ʿAbbād. Leiden: Brill, 2016. Licit Magic is the first study of letters of the tenth-century vizier and littérateur al-Ṣāḥib b. ʿAbbād and their political, social and cultural dimensions. Exploring both the aesthetic and pragmatic sides of the vizier’s letters, the book portrays the vital role that literary eloquence played in early Muslim statecraft. The book was recently translated into Arabic with the title, al-Ṣiḥr al-Ḥalāl and published by Dār al-Mashriq in Beirut.

His most recent book, co-authored with Bilal Orfali, The Maqāmāt of Badīʿ al-Zamān al-Hamadhānī: Authorship, Texts, and Contexts, Reichert Verlag: Wiesbaden, 2022 explores important dimensions of the life of the picaresque tales known as maqāmāt. This book was translated into Arabic as Maqāmāt Badīʿ al-Zamān al-Hamadhānī and is published by al-Dār al-ʿArabiyya lil-ʿUlūm.

Key People

Gila Waels

Associate Director, Academic Programs


Nahed Ahmed

Assistant Director, Public Programming


Nora Yousif

Assistant Director, Administration and Operations


Omar Hindawi

Assistant Manager, Academic Programs