In naming academic and diplomat Abdelaziz Djerad, 65, as prime minister of Algeria, President Abdelmadjid Tebboune is hoping to dispel fears that the new government will be made up of insiders.
Although Mr Djerad has served in government twice, his main focus has always been academia.
Mr Djerad was born in the north-eastern city of Khenchela, nestled in the Aures Mountains, in February 1954. After completing a bachelor's degree at the Institute of Political Sciences and International Relations of Algiers in 1976, he moved to Paris where be obtained his doctorate
He completed two years of national service, a requirement for all men over the age of 19, in 1986, going on to teach at some of the country's most prestigious institutions, Algeria Press Service reported.
He put his grounding in political theory into practice in a variety of public positions, including as director of the Ecole nationale d'administration in Algiers from 1989 to 1992, diplomatic adviser to the president from 1992 to 1993, and secretary general of the Presidency of the Republic from 1993 to 1995.
The new prime minister most recently held the post of secretary general of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs until 2003, when he was sidelined by the president at the time, Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who was ousted in April.
Mr Djerad became an outspoken critic of the Bouteflika regime, backing the protest movement and protesters who rejected any election held by a government in which the military was involved.
He was tasked Saturday with forming a government and underlined the need to “work together in order to address socioeconomic challenges facing the country”.