The desert, commonly understood as a barren and infertile landscape, is not empty. This thesis aims to create a critical perception of fullness in the Empty Quarter, “Rub Al Khali,” which stretches across the southern part of the Arabian Peninsula including Oman, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Yemen. The overarching understanding of deserts as a void has obscured the Empty Quarter’s image as a home to Bedouin tribes and a site of natural resource extraction, a fertile land for city building, an agricultural land, and a testing ground for scientific research. Through describing its social, environmental, urban, and cultural dimensions, the thesis renders legible the transient forms of life within the Empty Quarter. The thesis draws from multiple sources including the analysis of archival materials, historic maps, field observation, and tribal poetry leading toward a novel understanding of the Empty Quarter’s ecosystem. It is not a void but a space that cities depend on to meet the social and material needs of the inhabitants.