Dr Harmsen is Assistant Professor in Middle Eastern Studies. His fields of interests include sociopolitical movements, civil society, social development, human rights and democratization, issues of national self-determination, Islam, migration and intercultural issues.
Egbert Harmsen graduated in Middle Eastern Studies at Nijmegen University in 1995. He obtained his MPhil degree in Islamic Studies in 2000. In 2007 he received his PhD at Utrecht University. The theme of his dissertation was Muslim voluntary welfare and development associations in the Middle East and in particular in Jordan.
Before teaching Dr Harmsen was mainly engaged in research. In 2008-2009, he conducted fieldwork on Dutch converts to Islam and the process of (Islamic) identity formation they undergo in relation to the Dutch non-Muslim majority as well as the existing Dutch Muslim communities with a migrant background. In 2009-2010, he took part in a joint research project on counseling and conflict resolution on the basis of Islam in the Netherlands, financed by the Dutch Ministry of Justice.
Apart from research and education, Egbert Harmsen has been working as a social legal aid consultant and/or processor for asylumseekers, migrants and war victims.