Social Science

The disciplines in this field seek to deepen our understanding of how people behave in a wide variety of contexts and to assess the consequences of an individual, group, and societal decisions. Collectively, Social Science seeks to explain and investigate the functioning of society and address the vast array of pressing contemporary issues that affect individual and societal well-being.

  • How does our broader environment affect how we develop as individuals and behave collectively in our communities?
  • Why do our societies look the way they do, and why do they differ?
  • What drives pervasive inequality within and across regions, and what policies and institutions affect this?

The breadth of research in Social Science at NYU Abu Dhabi uses data to help historians, economists, NGOs, and governments better understand human behavior — and improve people’s lives.


A new world is unfolding before our eyes and at a remarkably dramatic pace in the wider region, rendering our presence in Abu Dhabi all the more meaningful.

Dean of Social Science Hervé Crès

Latest News

John O'Brien's Keeping It Halal: The Everyday Lives of Muslim American Teenage Boys awarded the 2019 Distinguished Book Award by the Religion Section of the American Sociological Association.

David Cook-Martin recipient of ASA “Distinguished Scholarly Book Award” for his book on Culling the Masses: The Democratic Origins of Racist Immigration Policy in the Americas.

Daniel Karell wins JPR Best Paper Award on his article, Aid, exclusion and the local dynamics of insurgency in Afghanistan.

Quartz has identified Bob AllenGlobal Distinguished Professor of Economic History, as one of 13 economists on the research that shaped our world in 2017

ThePrint spoke to some of the biggest names in Indian intelligentsia and asked who are the brightest minds on the horizon. Rahul Sagar was identified as one of the next generation of Indian intellectuals.

Leonid Peisakhin awarded the Gregory Luebbert Best Article Award from the APSA’s Comparative Politics Section on the paper 'The Legacy of Political Violence Across Generations'.

Peter Van der Windt receives Annual Bruce Russett Award for his article, Crowdseeding in Eastern Congo: Using Cell Phones to Collect Conflict Events Data in Real Time in the Journal of Conflict Resolution.

NYUAD students win first place at the CFA Institute Research Challenge regional competition on finance and banking. Congratulations Sorin Panfile, Sergey Shkurynskyy, and Anastasiya Karavan. 

NYU Abu Dhabi Students Witness Brexit Unfold

Students engaged with former prime ministers and key politicians across Europe as part of an immersive 10-day course. Taught by American political consultant and best-selling author Frank Luntz, Europe in Crisis: Brexit and the Future of the EU, was held in London, Brussels, and Paris. Throughout the course, 16 students interacted with former prime ministers including Tony Blair and key politicians such as Michael Gove to delve deeper as Britain renegotiates its relationship with the European Union.

Research Highlights

Moving Stories

Sociologists and other researchers have moved to NYU Abu Dhabi to study other migrants.


Social Science Faculty in the Media

Exploitation and Profiteering: Palestinians Forced to Pay a Fortune to Work in Israel
Wifag Adnan | Haaretz | October 23, 2019

Uganda hailed for allowing open discussion on people's grievances
Melina Platas | The Independent | October 18, 2019

Survey shows religious and gender bias against Syrian refugees
An analysis of US public views on Syrian refugees reveals religious, gender and age biases.
Nature Asia | October 15, 2019

The alternatives to privatization and nationalization
Robert Allen | The Economist | September 12, 2019

How to find a good restaurant? Economists can help
Romain Gauriot | Times Live South Africa | August 16, 2019

Outrage in Pakistan over abuse of child domestic workers
Saba Karim Khan | The Guardian | August 13, 2019


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