Joel Beinin "received his A.B. from Princeton University in 1970, his M.A. from Harvard University in 1974, and his A.M.L.S. and Ph.D. from the University of Michigan in 1978 and 1982. He also studied at the American University of Cairo and and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He lived in Egypt in 1969, 1980-81, 1985, 1986, 1993, and 2004-05, and in Israel in 1965-66, 1970-73, 1987, 1988, 1993, and 1993. From 1983 to 2006 he taught Middle East history at Stanford University. He is on leave from Stanford from 2006 to 2008 and currently serving as Director of Middle East Studies and Professor of History at the American University in Cairo. His research and writing focuses on workers, peasants, and minorities in the modern Middle East and on Israel, Palestine, and the Arab-Israeli conflict.
"Beinin has written or edited seven books, most recently Workers and Peasants in the Modern Middle East (Cambridge University Press, 2001) and The Struggle for Sovereignty: Palestine and Israel, 1993-2005, co-edited with Rebecca Stein (Stanford University Press, 2006). His articles have been published in leading scholarly journals as well as The Nation, Middle East Report, The Los Angeles Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, The San Jose Mercury News, The San Diego Union-Tribune, The Jordan Times, Asia Times, and Le Monde Diplomatique. He has appeared on Al-Jazeera TV, BBC radio, National Public Radio, and many other TV and radio programs throughout North America, and in France, Egypt, Singapore, and Australia, and has given frequent interviews to the global print media. In 2002 he served as President of the Middle East Studies Association of North America." 
- Advisory Board, (2003 at least) International Occupation Watch Center
- Advisory Board, US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation
- Board of Directors, Middle East Research and Information Project (MERIP), 1987-88, 1991-97 
- Director of Middle East Studies and Professor of History, American University in Cairo (since 2006)
- Fellowship Committee, American Research Center in Egypt, 1992; chair, 2006
- Former President, Middle East Studies Association of North America (MESA), 2001-02