While the world’s attention was fixed on the momentous events in Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya after the outbreak of the Arab Awakening, the desert states to the south were undergoing their own transformations with major global implications. Long overlooked by policymakers and scholars, the broader Sahara region has always possessed an underappreciated geopolitical significance. And changes should not be ignored. To explore regional sources of instability and what can be done to minimize the threat of simmering conflicts, Carnegie gathered top experts from the United States, Europe, and the region at an all-day conference to mark the launch of the new book Perilous Desert: Insecurity in the Sahara. The conference was held under Chatham House Rules.