Dr Omar Al-Ghazzi’s research investigates the cultural and political dimensions of news media and social media representations of conflict, with a particular interest in temporality. It does so by building an interdisciplinary theoretical framework that engages with the study of temporality and collective memory in relation to the digital media environment and to postcolonial contexts and societies, such as in the Middle East and North Africa region. Dr Al-Ghazzi is also interested in the ways that Arab political culture and media incorporate meta-narratives about history and the trajectory of an Arab and Islamic civilization.
Dr Al-Ghazzi’s research agenda is comparative in relation to time, by examining how imaginings of the past and future influence contemporary politics, and in relation to media technologies and genres, as well as geographical and cultural spaces. Some of his recent publications have taken the conflict in Syria as a context to examine political contention from both a top-down and bottom-up perspectives— whether the authoritarian and neoliberal politics that perpetuate doubt and speculation over digital media content or activist practices that use digital media as platforms to amplify voice. In terms of media and journalism practice, Dr Al-Ghazzi also maintains an interest in researching issues pertaining to freedom of expression and journalists’ safety. He was lead researcher for UNESCO’s flagship publication (2018) “World Trends in Freedom of Expression and Media Development: Regional overview of the Arab Region.”