The New Administrative Capital in Egypt: The Political Economy of the Production of Urban Spaces in Cairo


  • Patrick Loewert University Eichstätt-Ingolstadt
  • Christian Steiner University Eichstätt-Ingolstadt



New administrative capital, political economy, power struggle, Egypt, urban development, mega projects


The New Administrative Capital reshapes Egypt’s urban landscape thoroughly. Nevertheless, empirical research on its political economy and spatial imaginaries is lacking. Building on a political geography framework and extensive qualitative fieldwork, we aim at contrasting official constructions of space with an analysis of the hidden interests, actions, and power struggles between its main stakeholders. Whereas foreign and private investors are officially key to the project, our analysis demonstrates that state institutions rivaled over its control, providing the military with new rent sources. The location and seize of the new palace indicates a lack of democratic conviction whereas citizen participation is largely missing.


Patrick Loewert, University Eichstätt-Ingolstadt

Patrick Loewert holds a BA in History as well as a BSc and a MSc degree in Human Geography from the University of Münster. He wrote his Master thesis on urban development in the Cairo region. Currently, he is working at the Wüstenrot and Württembergische group as a project leader and concentrates on urban renewal analyses, urban digitalization, and city development concepts. In his PhD project, he is working on public participation and sustainability issues in urban mega projects in the Arab World.

Christian Steiner, University Eichstätt-Ingolstadt

Christian Steiner is Chair for Human Geography at the University of Eichstätt-Ingolstadt. Prior, he was Visiting Professor for Economic Geography at the Universities of Frankfurt, Osnabrück and Innsbruck and visiting research fellow at the Centre for Modern Oriental Studies in Berlin. He published extensively on the nexus of the political economy, tourism and urban development in the Arab world. Aside from that, his current research interest are to be found in the fields of human-environment relations and pragmatism inspired economic geography. His habilitation on ‘Pragmatism, Environment and Space’ was granted with the Hans-Bobek-Prize of the Austrian Geographical Society.





Loewert, P., und C. Steiner. „The New Administrative Capital in Egypt: The Political Economy of the Production of Urban Spaces in Cairo“. Middle East - Topics & Arguments, Bd. 12, Nr. 1, Juni 2019, S. 66-75, doi:10.17192/meta.2019.12.7933.