Rima Rassi has years of experience in academic and research settings, having worked at universities and think tanks/research institutes in Lebanon and abroad. Rima holds a Master of Arts in Sociology from the American University of Beirut (2008). For the past ten years, her research has been dedicated to the study of population movements and refugee crises in Lebanon and the greater Arab region. She has presented at and participated in more than twenty conferences, seminars and workshops and has a number of publications on refugee issues. For her dissertation, Rima seeks to investigate the structural and historical origins of UNHCR's "surrogate state" role in dealing with the recent Syrian refugee crisis in Lebanon, to understand how the dynamics of the relationship between UNHCR and Lebanese authorities has been preconditioned by the international refugee regime.