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Dr Matthijs van den Bos

Lecturer in International Studies

Previous academic functions

  • Postdoctoral research fellow at the Institute for Migration and Ethnic Studies (IMES), University of Amsterdam
  • Postdoctoral research fellow at the International Institute for the Study of Islam in the Modern World (ISIM), Leiden
  • PhD researcher at the Amsterdam School for Social Science Research (ASSR), University of Amsterdam
  • Lecturer at the University of Amsterdam and University College Utrecht


  • My research and teaching have focused on the areas of transnational networks, Shiism, Sufism, political anthropology/sociology, democratization, classification theory, and new media.
  • Regionally, my interests are on Iran, the Middle East, Tajikistan, and Europe.
  • My PhD dissertation, Mystic Regimes, investigates the long-term socio-political development of two Shiite Sufi orders in Iran.
  • My first postdoctoral research was concerned with comparative notions of sanctity in the Islamic Republic and in Shiite Sufi orders in Iran; my second postdoctoral dealt with Dutch-Iranian online and offline transnational networks. I am currently involved with research into European Shiism.

Areas of research supervision

  • Post-migrancy and transnational networks; political anthropology/sociology of Iran and its diasporas; Tajikistan; (Twelver) Shiism and its global renaissance; modern Sufism, East and West; European Islam; democratization in the Middle East; classification theory; new media.
  • If you are interested in pursuing research in any of these areas, you should first read our advice on how to apply for MPhil/PhD research before submitting an application.


  • Middle East Politics (P/G) [2010-11; 11-12; 12-13]
  • Nationalism in International Context (P/G) [2012-2013]
  • International Migration and Transnationalism (U/G) [2011-12; 12-13]
  • Islamist Movements (P/G) [2011-12]
  • Politics and the Middle East (U/G) [2010-11]
  • Authority in Shiite Islam (U/G) [2009-10]
  • Modern Iran (U/G) [2007-8; 8-9]

Membership of professional organisations

  • Middle East Studies Association (MESA) [2003-2012]

Selected Publications

For an extended overview, see

  • Van den Bos, M. 2006. Hyperlinked Dutch-Iranian Cyberspace. International Sociology 21 (1): 83-99.
  • Van den Bos, M. 2006. Landmarks for 'Nowhereland': Scratching the Surface of Transnational Dutch-Iranian Hyperlink Networks. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute 12 (3): 643-61.
  • Van den Bos, M. 2005. "'Abdollah Entezam: A New Perspective on 'Erfan and Sufism." In Religion and Politics in Modern Iran, (ed.) L. Ridgeon. London: I.B. Tauris, pp. 149-62.
  • Van den Bos, M. 2005. Transnational Orientalism: Henry Corbin in Iran. Anthropos 100 (1): 113-25.
  • Van den Bos, M. 2002. Mystic Regimes. Sufism and the State in Iran, from the late Qajar era to the Islamic Republic (Social, economic and political studies of the Middle East and Asia 83). Leiden: Brill.

Matthijs van den Bos

Contact details

Tel: +44 (0)20 3073 8056

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