Dr. Esra Pakin Albayrakoglu was born in Istanbul, Turkey. She completed her BA in American Studies as well as MA and PhD in International Relations at Bilkent University, which ranks the 39th according to the “Times Higher Education 100 Under 50” (2013). Her specializations are American foreign policy, the politics of the Gulf, and new security challenges in a global era. Currently, Mrs. Pakin Albayrakoglu works as Executive Editor in Turkey’s first online defence magazine, C4Defence. She is also an Assistant Professor at the Department of Political Science at Istanbul Esenyurt University. She has formerly worked as Adjunct Lecturer at the Turkish War Colleges Command, Strategic Research Institute. She was also an occasional contributor to Turkish think tanks BILGESAM and ORSAM with her analyses on contemporary international relations. Among her scholarly publications on the Middle East are “Gulf Integration in post-Arab Spring: Deepening or Decaying?” Journal of Security Strategies (2014); “The Iran Factor in U.S.-Gulf Cooperation Council Relations”, Uluslararasi Iliskiler (2011) and “Global Economic Factors on Gulf Labor Dynamics”, International Journal of Economics and Finance Studies (2010). Mrs. Pakin Albayrakoglu travels extensively to the Middle East and the Gulf. She once took part in a select team of scholars accompanying the former Turkish President Abdullah Gul’s official visit to Oman, April 12-14, 2010.