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In cooperation with the Heinrich Böll Foundation

Conference — June 9-11, 2004:

Media Ethics & Journalism in the Arab World: Theory, Practice & Challenges Ahead


Abdallah, Mr. Maher was Acting Head of International and Media Relations at Al Jazeera satellite channel and presenter of a live weekly program. He joined the channel in 1998 as head of the assignment desk. He previously worked as a journalist in the news department of the Middle East Broadcasting Corporation in London. He also wrote for the pan-Arab daily Al Hayat and Al Wasat Weekly and covered the 1990 Iraq War for both papers. Abdallah was killed in a tragic car accident in Doha, Qatar, on September 11, 2004.

Abu-Fadil, Mrs. Magda is LAU’s Director of the Institute for Professional Journalists and of University Publications. She brings 25 years of experience as a foreign correspondent and editor with international news agencies such as Agence France-Presse, United Press International; newspapers such as Asharq Al-Awsat, Al Riyadh and Defense News; and, magazines such as The Middle East and Events. She taught journalism at the American University in Washington, DC – from where she obtained a B.A. and M.A. in Communication and Multimedia – and was coordinator of the Journalism Program at the Lebanese American University for six years. She has conducted seminars and workshops for professional journalists at the Washington-based International Center for Journalists and at LAU and has worked closely with the Vienna-based International Press Institute, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, Open Society Institute, and United States Agency for International Development.

Abu Taha, Ms. Tala is in charge of public relations for the Middle East at TRACCS (Trans-Arabian Creative Communications Services). After years of reporting for Arabic- and English-language dailies in Jordan, she took a job as media consultant with a private aviation company and has specialized in media relations since then. Her more recent interests focus on electronic publishing through content management systems. She served as senior editor, portal manager and product manager at Arabia Online and as press relations and sponsorship manager at MobileCom Jordanian, a public mobile phone network operator.

Bachir, Dr. Imad is Director of the Faculty of Information and Documentation at the Lebanese University’s First Branch. Bachir received his Ph.D. in Information Studies from the University of London, from where he also earned an M.A. He was an undergraduate and later a faculty member at the Lebanese University in Beirut, and for several years worked as research editor at the Research Center of the pan-Arab daily Al Hayat. He has published several scholarly articles, notably in the Journal of Information Science and is considered an expert on the impact of desktop publishing technology on archiving and retrieving Arabic texts.

Dabbous, Dr. Sonia is Assistant Editor for Political and Diplomatic Affairs at Egypt’s Akhbar Al Yom newspaper, as well as a member of the executive board of the paper’s Academy of Engineering and Media Technology. She is an affiliate professor of mass communication at the American University in Cairo. Her career has spanned three decades of coverage of international and presidential affairs. She has also taught communication at Cairo University and the Higher Academy of Arts in Giza, Egypt. Dabbous is the recipient of countless fellowships, has published several books and studies and speaks on a regular basis at international conferences.

Damazer, Mr. Mark, was educated at Cambridge University, where he studied History, and at the Kennedy School, Harvard, where he was a Harkness Fellow. He worked for Senator Paul Tsongas on Capitol Hill as a Congressional Fellow. He began his career as a journalist at ITN before joining the BBC. He edited the BBC’s main evening television news program. He went on to become Head of Current Affairs and Head of the BBC’s Politics Department before becoming Deputy Director of News, with oversight of all BBC News radio, television and online journalism.

Al Emam, Ms. Mahasen is director of the Arab Women’s Media Center in Amman, Jordan. She has worked as a reporter and editor for various Jordanian media, including Akhbar Al Ousou’, Al Rai, Al Doustour, Al Shaab and Sawt Al Mara’h. She was the first woman chief editor of a newspaper in Jordan and the first committee member of the country’s press union. She is the recipient of many journalistic awards.

Hijjawi, Mr. Aref was program director at the BBC’s Arabic service and since leaving the Beeb has been acting director of the Bir Zeit Media Center in Palestine. He continues to file stories from the West Bank for the BBC’s Arabic Service. He has authored several media-related publications, including training manuals for journalists.

Ismail, Mr. Fadi is general manager of 03 Productions at Dubai Media City. He has worked with Al Arabiya news channel and was head of current affairs at the Middle East Broadcasting Center in London, following a stint as assistant director for news and international operations. Ismail has also been a producer and reporter of special coverage, documentaries, telethons, live political chat programs and television pilots.

Kahale, Ms. May is a freelance writer and was senior Lebanon columnist for the Saudi Arabian daily Al Riyadh. She served  as media adviser to former Lebanese president Elias Hrawi. Previously she was a presenter of an interview program on the Lebanese Broadcasting Corporation as well as Beirut correspondent for the Saudi daily Asharq Al-Awsat based in London and the UAE newspaper Al Bayan in Dubai. Kahale has worked as a news presenter and interviewer on state-run Tele-Liban. She also was a reporter covering local politics for the Lebanese daily An-Nahar.

Knio, Dr. Mona heads the Arts & Communication Division at the Lebanese American University, Beirut, and is Assistant Professor of drama at that institution. Knio conducts and organizes workshops in theater education and technical stagecraft in Lebanon and various Arab countries. Her career includes solid experience in technical direction and stage lighting design. She also serves as curator for the Amman International Theater Festival, board member on the Arab Theater Training Center and board member on the experts committee of Dance Bassin Méditerranée.

Lamnadi, Dr. Ahmed is a professor of communication at the Institute for Language and Communication Studies, Morocco, and editor-in-chief of Radiodiffusion Télévision Marocaine’s French-language radio news service. He has an extensive career with the latter. He has written and spoken about privatization of Morocco’s media; was research associate at Ohio U.’s College of Communication; served as a consultant for Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Communication Programs; and held teaching positions at Ohio U., the Institute for Language and Communication Studies and the Higher Institute of Information and Communication in Rabat.

Löwstedt, Dr. Anthony works on press freedom and media monitoring-related human rights. He is also the Middle East coordinator at the International Press Institute in Vienna. His pursuits include documentation, publications, research, consultation and organization of international conferences and seminars. Löwstedt is also an adjunct professor at Webster University in Vienna, focusing on the study of ethics in the media, media literacy, cultural diversity and globalization. He has written and spoken extensively about mass media and war, press freedom in the world, freedom of expression and apartheid.

Maas, Ms. Kirsten is Director of the Arab Middle East office of the Berlin-based Heinrich Böll Foundation in Beirut. She previously served in the United Nations Special Coordinator’s Office in the region, maintaining close contacts with non-governmental organizations. Prior to her NGO work, Maas was an editor on the Middle East desk of the Berlin daily Die Tageszeitun. Her specialty area is Middle Eastern Studies. She has also been closely associated with Germany’s Green Party since the late 1980s. Heinrich Böll is a foundation linked to the Green Party.

Moukalled, Ms. Diana began her career as a general assignment reporter at Lebanon’s New TV and moved a year later to Future TV, where she has been a producer, news assignment editor and presenter of documentaries. Moukalled was the assignment editor of a newscast on Zein, a youth station owned by the Future TV group, and moved from there to Future’s satellite channel. She also writes freelance in-depth pieces for the London-based pan-Arab daily Al-Hayat and its weekly magazine Al-Wasat. She spent a year as a freelance news and documentary producer with Reuters TV and worked for both German and Finnish TV. She also did a stint as a researcher and editor at the Lebanese Information Ministry.

Mroue, Mr. Jamil Kamel is a leading figure in the regional newspaper business. He is Chairman of the Board and Editor-in-Chief of the Association of The Daily Star and the International Herald Tribune (for the Middle East and Gulf Region). He graduated as a business major from the American University of Beirut and joined Harvard University in 1976, where he completed a study program in Journalism as a Nieman Fellow. He directed Al-Hayat newspaper, founded by his father Kamel Mroue, and turned it into the leading Arabic-language daily in the Middle East.

Nasir, Mr. Labib is media and information coordinator at “MIFTAH,” the Palestinian Initiative for the Promotion of Global Dialogue and Democracy run by Dr. Hanan Ashrawi. “MIFTAH” is a non-governmental non-partisan Jerusalem-based institution dedicated to fostering democracy and good governance within Palestinian society in a manner that promotes public accountability and transparency while maintaining the free flow of information and ideas. Nasir has also served as a researcher for the Jerusalem Media and Communication Center and with the Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center in Jerusalem.

Nasrallah, Mr. Rafik is Lebanon bureau chief of Emirates Media, grouping Abu Dhabi TV, Emirates TV and the Emirates News Agency WAM. He is also an adviser to the UAE’s minister of defense and served as a media adviser to that country’s foreign minister. He previously served as media supervisor at the UAE embassy in Beirut. Nasrallah is a former member of the board of Lebanon’s state-run Tele-Liban; is a writer and researcher on Arab and international affairs; is an expert on news exchanges via satellite; has written extensively for radio and television; and, has supervised media training courses at Lebanese and Arab universities.

Oussi, Mr. Christian is a noted Lebanese journalist now serving as media consultant to Deputy Prime Minister Issam Fares. Oussi was head of the news department and news presenter at state-run Tele-Liban, where he had previously been editor in chief and senior reporter. He has also worked as a Beirut correspondent for Radio Canada International and for Australia’s SBS Television, and, has written for the weeklies Al Hawadeth and Al Majalla.

Razzouk, Ms. Nayla is an English desk correspondent for Agence France-Presse in Beirut. She has covered major developments such as armed confrontations in Israeli-occupied South Lebanon and subsequent Israeli withdrawal, the Israeli-Syrian peace negotiations in the U.S., the Organisation of African Unity summit in Libya, the release of foreign hostages from Jolo, the Philippines, the UN weapons inspections in Iraq and the U.S.-led invasion and occupation of Iraq. Previously she worked with United Press International as a Beirut correspondent, where she focused on local events.

El-Sabban, Dr. Mona is founder and director of the Internet-based Arab Film/TV School in Cairo, Egypt. The project resulted from her interest in interactive teaching, following many years in film and television editing. She worked on productions from Egypt, Lebanon, the U.S., the U.K. and Switzerland. El-Sabban has also taught at Helwan University, University of Egypt, Cairo University, the Television Institute (Egypt), Lebanese University and the High Cinema Institute (Egypt). As a specialist in her field she was a consultant for the Suzanne Mubarak Exploratory Center for Science and prepared a study program for teaching editing in Egypt’s Cinema Institute. She has published four books on film editing for TV and digital media.

Scarone, Mr. Marcello is Program Specialist in the Division for Freedom of Expression, Democracy and Peace in the Sector for Communication and Information of UNESCO, based at the organization’s headquarters in Paris. He is in charge of matters related to freedom of expression and its relationship to democracy and peace, in particular media and press legislation, relationships between media and parliamentarians/legislators, pluralism and independence of media in conflict and post-conflict zones. He is also in charge of UNESCO activities in freedom of the press in the Americas and the Middle East. Before joining UNESCO, Scarone carried out similar duties at the International Press Institute in Vienna. He has written and published studies and documents on several of these subjects.

Skene, Mr. Neil is former trustee of the Poynter Institute for Media Studies in Florida as well as advisory board chairman and member, Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California at Berkeley, among other academic institutions. His journalistic experience includes years of service as president, editor and publisher of the Congressional Quarterly in Washington, D.C.; editor of the Evening Independent in Tallahassee, Florida; editor in chief and senior vice president of Individual, Inc. More recently, Skene was senior vice president of Creative Loafing, Inc., and managing principal of Advanced Interactive Media Group in Virginia and Florida.

Tarabay, Dr. Mahmoud is an assistant professor of Communication and Journalism at the Lebanese University. His experience includes working on publishing projects for weekly bulletins and monthly magazines and research in the Gulf and the UK-based Center for Mass Communication Research. He has conducted workshops for professional journalists at the Lebanese American University with the U.S.-based International Center for Journalists.

Tueni, Mr. Gebran G. is Chairman of the Board/General Manager and editorialist of An-Nahar daily newspaper of Lebanon, where he has served in various key editorial and managerial positions since 1979, including An-Nahar Arab and International. He is also general manager of the monthly magazine Noun. Tueni is a regular on the radio and TV talk show circuit and has produced and hosted thought-provoking political TV programs. He has served as an advisor in communication and information to UNESCO; is a special advisor to the president of the World Association of Newspapers for the Arab World; and is a member of several international and Lebanese associations and syndicates.

Whitaker, Mr. Brian joined the Guardian in 1987 and has been Middle East editor since May 2000. While working for the paper he took a part-time degree in Arabic at Westminster University. He also writes about Yemen for Middle East International magazine and has his own website devoted to Arab culture and politics:

Ziade, Ms. Mona is communications officer, World Bank Country Office for Lebanon. She served for eight years as National and Middle East editor of the English-language The Daily Star based in Beirut. Her previous 13 years were spent covering Middle East and international news for The Associated Press. She also worked as a general reporter for United Press International, covering the Middle East, Arab summit conferences, the Lebanese civil war, the hostage crisis in Iran and Israeli invasion of Lebanon.

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