What the heck is she doing?

Friday, 11 March 2016
My friend Katie commented on a previous blog post asking about my research and I realized that I haven't given many details about what exactly I am doing in Sri Lanka.

My dissertation highlighted the research I've conducted over the last four years regarding journalists who cover conflict. I was able to interview and follow up with people who have reported on fighting in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. Many have been shot at, wounded, and many have watched their colleagues die.

While researching for my dissertation I learned that journalists need basic first aid training (many have no idea how to conduct CPR or apply a tourniquet) and often pursue dangerous assignments because the "bang-bang" accounts are most likely to make it on air or into a magazine or newspaper. I believe there is much more to learn about this phenomenon. That's why I applied for the Fulbright and was awarded a research grant to Pakistan (never mind, their government wouldn't give Fulbrighters a visa) and then the location was switched to Sri Lanka.

Over the next few months I will be working with The Sunday Times, the Sri Lankan Press Institute, as well as other news outlets all over the country to explore more deeply what influences the coverage of conflict. Sri Lanka was a war-torn country for many years. There are still signs of the civil war that raged between the north and the south. Journalists here were killed, beaten up, threatened, and coerced after and before running certain stories. I hope to speak with as many as possible who covered the civil war and record data regarding their experiences and perceptions. I'll update my progress here. Thank you for reading. 

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