Alum Saeb Erakat: Palestinian Uber-negotiator

Thursday, October 09, 2014
DAILY MAVERICK -- Curiously, Erakat looks younger than the image seen so often on television. He’s been a prominent figure on the news and in newsmaker interviews hundreds of times over the past two decades. Erakat jokes that it is the beard — or, rather, the lack of one now. He explains he shaved it off fairly recently and now he has that “youthful look.” This is a man who knows his way around the West. There are those two university degrees from San Francisco State University in the U.S. as well as a Ph.D. from Bradford University in the U.K. in the field of peace and conflict studies. He notes with some pride that he has just finished writing a book entitled Islamic vs. Western Negotiation Traditions, which he says is probably the first systematic treatment of specifically Islamic approaches to international negotiations — in a comparative format.