Alexey Khlebnikov is an expert on the Middle East at the Russian International Affairs Council. He also used to work as a consultant to various think tanks and institutions in the U.S., Middle East, and Russia. During his Master’s and Ph.D. studies, he has made several research trips working and studying in Syria, Israel, Egypt, and Hungary. He has been published on international relations topics in particular on the Middle East in academic journals and media sources in Russia, Europe, U.S., and the Middle East. He received his Master’s degree in Global Public Policy from the Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota as an Edmund S. Muskie Scholar and both Bachelor's and Master's in Middle East studies from Lobachevsky State University in Nizhni Novgorod. His theses were devoted to the "Arab Spring" failure in Egypt and Syria. Currently he is a Ph.D. candidate.