Interviewing the journalists
Following the uprisings which shook the Arab world in 2010, there were hopes the national media would move towards independent and factual reporting and would play a role in the journey towards democracy.
But Dr el Issawi, a senior lecturer in journalism at the University of Essex, reveals in her empirical research, carried out in the region after the uprisings, that state interference remains strong and national media play the role of a political institution. Her research highlights how neutrality is rejected and partisanship is adopted by media professionals, who see themselves as defenders of regimes or supporters of political agendas.
Dr el Issawi, has over 15 years experience as a reporter in the Middle East, covering conflicts in Lebanon, post-Saddam Iraq and Jordan, for international media including the BBC World Service. She is a visiting senior Fellow at the London School of Economics and is a media consultant and commentator.
Her study is based on in-depth interviews with journalists, an analysis of media regulation and case studies from Tunisia, Egypt and Libya.