In November 1949 the Arabian American Oil Company (Aramco) launched Aramco World as an interoffice newsletter that linked the company's US offices with "the field"—primarily Dhahran, in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia.
As Saudi energy resources took on greater global importance, the company's growth brought tens of thousands of Americans to Dhahran, and Aramco World grew into a bimonthly educational magazine styled along the lines of such popular US magazines as Life, Look and The Saturday Evening Post. Historical, geographical and cultural articles helped the American employees and their families appreciate an unfamiliar land.
Today, that educational orientation, and the goals of fostering cooperation and building mutual appreciation among cultures of the historical “East” and “West,” remain unchanged for what has grown into AramcoWorld's global readership.
Since the 1960s, the magazine has been produced for readers outside as well as inside the company, worldwide. For decades its articles have spanned the Arab and Muslim cultural worlds, past and present, with special attention to their global interconnections.
Over the years, the magazine's editors have worked out of five cities on three continents: New York, Beirut, The Hague, Leiden and since 1987, Houston. Today AramcoWorld is published by Aramco Americas on behalf of Aramco, since 1988 the national energy and chemicals company of Saudi Arabia.
The print edition of AramcoWorld is distributed six times a year, upon request and without charge, to some 35,000 subscribers in more than 125 countries. The digital edition offers all the content available in print along with video, galleries, our photo archive, comprehensive library of articles and PDF back issues, all free. Likewise, our mobile app for iOS and Android is also free, and you can follow AramcoWorld on Facebook and Instagram @aramcoworld.
Over the years, AramcoWorld has earned dozens of awards for editorial, graphic, printing and interactive quality.
Its purpose, goal and hope remain education and the increase of cross-cultural understanding.