Chairman of Board of Trustees On 31 January 2017, Dr. Shaikh Abdulla bin Ahmed Al Khalifa was appointed Chairman of the Board of Trustees at the Bahrain Centre for Strategic, International and Energy Studies, in addition to serving as Undersecretary for International Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Bahrain, a post he has held since August 2015. Previously Shaikh Abdulla held the post of Director General for External Communications (2014) at the Information Affairs Authority, during which he played a pivotal role in drawing up and implementing a strategy for strengthening the country’s national communications and public engagement. Prior to this Shaikh Abdulla served as a political advisor to the General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Defense (2011) and as a Legal Specialist at the Bahrain Economic Development Board from 2007-2009. He also served as a Research Assistant with the Dean of Law Faculty at Queen Mary College, University of London from 2008-2009. In 2015, Shaikh Abdulla was awarded a PhD in International Relations and Diplomacy from the École des Hautes Études Internationales, France. In 2008, he earned a Master of Law (LLM) from Queen Mary College, University of London, UK, focusing on negotiation and mediation. He also holds a Diploma in Political Development (Honors) from the Bahrain Institute for Political Development, Bahrain 2007 and a Bachelor of Law (LLB) (Honours) from the Applied Science University, Jordan 2006. Shaikh Abdulla is an international expert in Mediation, accredited by the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR) in London where he participated in their training initiatives for international agencies and experts. He is also accredited as a Master Practitioner in Neuro Linguistic Programming by the United States’ National Federation of Neuro Linguistic Programming. Shaikh Abdulla has a passion for the arts and is proficient in Arabic, English and French. He has been Vice President of the Paris based, ‘French Bahraini Friendship Society’ since 2011 and a member of the Jordan-based ‘Arab Thought Forum’ since 2013. He is an advocate of cross-cultural public diplomacy and publishes papers in various fields on a regular basis. He enjoys scuba diving, chess and collecting antiques.