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Edward R. Murrow College of Communication

Lawrence Pintak

  1. Founding Dean (2009-2016)
  2. Professor
LocationWashington State University



Lawrence Pintak, PhD is an award-winning journalist, academic leader, and media development expert who has reported from four continents and led projects aimed at bolstering journalistic professionalism and independence in the Middle East, South Asia, Africa, and the Caucasus. He served as dean of the Graduate School of Media and Communications at The Aga Khan University in East Africa, founding dean of The Edward R. Murrow College of Communication at Washington State University, helped establish Pakistan’s Centre for Excellence in Journalism, and directed the Arab world’s leading media training center in the years leading up to the Arab Spring. A former CBS News Middle East correspondent, Pintak is the author of five books at the intersection of media, religion, democracy, and international relations, and was named a Fellow of the Society of Professional Journalists in 2017 for “extraordinary service to the profession of journalism” around the world. His first novel, Target: Hollywood, was published in 2022. He holds a PhD in Islamic Studies.



  • University of Wales, Trinity Saint David. PhD in Islamic Studies (2009). Dissertation – Islam, Nationalism and the Mission of Arab Journalism.
  • University of Wales, Trinity Saint David. MPhil in Theology, Religion and Islam (2007).
  • The American University, Washington, D.C., BA in Communications
  • Medill School of Journalism, Northwestern Univ., Undergraduate Studies (transferred senior year due to a job offer)

Classes Taught

  • All COMM 475s
  • Terrorism, Islam & the Media
  • Understanding the News
  • Global Journalism and Misinformation: A Serbia-U.S. Student Dialogue

Research Interests

  • Perceptions of the U.S. among the world’s Muslims
  • Islamophobia
  • International journalism
  • Journalism motivations
  • Freedom of the press


  • 2022, United States Department of State, Certificate of Appreciation; “For unwavering expert support and advice to the Center for Excellence in Journalism. Your dedication to the success of this flagship project from its inception through numerous challenges reflects the highest caliber of performance – a stellar example of perseverance and professionalism.”
  • 2021, (Inaugural) Professional Freedom and Responsibility Award; presented by the AEJMC Religion and Media Interest Group.2020 Finalist, Religion News Association Award for Religion Reporting Excellence for the book “America & Islam.”
  • 2017, Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ), Fellow of the Society. SPJ’s highest award for “journalists who have made an extraordinary contribution to the profession.”
  • 2019, Association of Journalism and Mass Communication Educations (AEJMC), Senior Scholar Awardee for “Mediatization of Islamophobia in the 2018 Election,” with Brian J. Bowe of Western Washington Univ.

Emmy Nominations – Academic of Television Arts & Sciences

  • 1983, “Outstanding coverage of a single breaking news story” for Beirut U.S. Marines barracks bombing on The CBS Evening News.
  • 1980, “Outstanding program achievement” for exclusive coverage of the opening days of the Iran-Iraq War on The CBS Evening News.

Overseas Press Club

  • 1983, “Citation for Excellence,” Ben Grauer Award for Best Radio Spot News Reporting, for coverage of the Lebanon conflict.
  • 1980, “Citation for Excellence” for exclusive coverage of the opening days of the Iran-Iraq War on The CBS Evening News.

New England Press Association (Editor of Winning Paper)

  • 2000, Top award for “General Excellence” (Alt Weekly category)
  • 1999, Top award for “General Excellence” (Alt Weekly category)
  • 1998, Newspaper of the Year (Alt Weekly category)

Selected Publications

Download CV


America & Islam: Soundbites, Suicide Bombs, and the Road to Donald Trump

Bloomsbury/I.B. Tauris (2019)

Islam for Journalists (and Everyone Else): A primer on covering – and understanding – Muslim communities in the U.S. (Second edition, 2017).

Digital Newsbooks, Reynolds Journalism Institute

The New Arab Journalist: Mission & Identity in a Time of Turmoil

I.B. Tauris (2011)

Reflections in a Bloodshot Lens: America, Islam & the War of Ideas

Univ. of Michigan Press/Pluto Books (2006)

Seeds of Hate: How America’s Flawed Middle East Policy Ignited the Jihad

Pluto Books (2003) (revision/update of 1987 book Beirut Outtakes: A TV Correspondent’s Portrait of America’s Encounter with Terror, Lexington Books)

Research Studies & Policy Reports

#Islamophobia: Stoking Fear & Prejudice in the 2018 Midterms. Social Science Research Council white paper. Nov. 5, 2019

Benchmarking the CEJ: Follow up to the 2013 needs assessment of Pakistani professional journalism training and education. Briefing paper for the U.S. Department of State, March 2017.

The GEO TV Effect: Media & Policy in Pakistan. Briefing paper for the U.S. Department of State, July 2014.

Reporting for the Future: An Assessment of Pakistani Journalism Training and Education. Briefing paper for the U.S. Department of State, July 2013.

The Worldview of Pakistani Journalists. Briefing paper for the Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy. Oct. 2012.

The Murrow Rural Information Initiative: Access, Digital Citizenship and the Obligations of the Washington State Information Sector. May 2012. Carnegie-Knight project on the Information Needs of Communities.

Media, Conflict and Political Change in the Muslim World. Report from the Pocantico Retreat. Rockefeller Brothers Fund. Nov. 2011

Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles (2008 – Present) [h-index 17; i10-index 24]

Pintak, Lawrence; Bowe, Brian J.; Albright, Jonathan. “Influencers, Amplifiers, and Icons: A Systematic Approach to Understanding the Roles of Islamophobic Actors on Twitter.” Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly. Online First, July 2021. ISI© impact factor: 4.749.

Pintak, Lawrence; Bowe, Brian J.; Nazir, Syed Javed. “Mediatization in Pakistan: Perceptions of Media Influence on a Fragile Democracy.” Journalism: Theory, Practice & Criticism. Vol. 19, 7: pp. 934-958. Online First, August 2016. ISI© impact factor: 1.273.

Pintak, Lawrence. “Islam, Identity and Professional Values: A study of journalists in three Muslim-majority regions.” Journalism: Theory, Practice & Criticism. Vol. 15, No. 4, 2014. ISI© impact factor: 1.287.

Pintak, Lawrence; Nazir, Syed Javed. “Pakistani Journalism: At the Crossroads of Muslim Identity, National Priorities and Journalistic Culture.” Media, Culture & Society. Vol. 35, No. 5, July 2013. ISI© impact factor 1.092.

Pintak, Lawrence; Setiyono, Budi. “The Mission of Indonesian Journalism: Balancing democracy, development and Islamic values.” International Journal Press/Politics (Vol. 16, No. 2, April 2011). ISI© impact factor 1.872.

Pintak, Lawrence. “Border Guards of the ‘Imagined’ Watan: Arab Journalists and the New Arab Consciousness.” Middle East Journal (Vol. 63, No. 2; Spring 2009). ISI© impact factor 0.69.

Pintak, Lawrence; Ginges, Jeremy. “Inside the Arab Newsroom: Arab journalists evaluate themselves and the competition.” Journalism Studies (Vol. 10, No. 2, Apr. 2009). One of the most downloaded articles in 2009. ISI© impact factor 1.044. Affiliated with ICA and ECREA Journalism Studies Divisions.

Pintak, Lawrence; Ginges, Jeremy. “The Mission of Arab Journalism: Creating change in a time of turmoil.” International Journal Press/Politics (Vol. 13, No. 3, July 2008). ISI© impact factor 1.872.

Pintak, Lawrence. “Satellite TV News and Arab Democracy,” Journalism Practice (Vol. 2 No. 1, Feb. 2008). Essays and Reviews in Academic Journals

Pintak, Lawrence. “Journalism: Mirror on a Decaying Arab World” (essay). Digital Journalism (10:2, Online First, May 2022). ISI© impact factor 7.986.

Pintak, Lawrence. Review of Hate Spin by Cherian George. In European Journal of Communication (34:1, Feb. 2019). ISI© impact factor 1.124; 8/45 Comm.

Pintak, Lawrence. Review of Investigative Journalism in the Arab World: Issues and Challenges by Saba Bebawi. In Journalism: Theory, Practice & Criticism (Online First, April 2018). ISI© impact factor: 1.273; 25/79 in Communication.

Pintak, Lawrence. Review of Democracy and Counterterrorism by Robert J. Art and Louise Richardson. In European Journal of Communication (23:1, Feb. 2008). ISI© impact factor 1.124; 8/45 Comm.


Journalism in MENA. Invited chapter Handbook of Media and Culture in the Middle East, Tourya Guaaybess and Joe F. Khalil, editors. Wiley-Blackwell (in press).

Middle Eastern and North African Journalism. Invited chapter in the ICA International Encyclopedia of Journalism, Tim P. Vos and Folker Hanusch, editors-in-chief. Wiley-Blackwell. (April 2019).

Arab Media and the Al Jazeera Effect. Invited chapter in Global Communication: Theories, Stakeholders and Trends, Thomas McPhail, ed. Wiley-Blackwell (Revised chapters in each edition). 5th edition. Dec. 2019.

Arab Journalists. Invited chapter in The Global Journalist: Newspeople around the world (2nd edition), David H. Weaver and Wei Wu, eds. Hampton Press. (2012).

Arab Media. Invited chapter in Public Sentinel: News Media and Governance Reform, Pippa Norris, ed. (2009). World Bank Publications.

Obama tra il Cairo e Washington DC. I blogger egiziani raccontano le elezioni Americane. In Un Hussein alla Casa Bianca. Donatella della Ratta and Augusto Valeriani, eds. Odoya Books (Rome 2009).

Journalist as Change Agent: Government repression, corporate feudalism and the mission of Arab journalism. Invited chapter in Middle East and the Media, Arneim Heinemann, ed. Saqi Books (2008).

The Communications Gap between America and the Muslim World. Invited chapter in Terrorism, Democracy, the West and the Muslim World, Abdul Rashid Moten, ed., Thompson Learning, (2007).

“Not Quite Kifaya: Satellite TV and Arab Democracy.” Invited chapter in New Media and Socio-Political Change in the Arab World; the Lebanese Center for Policy Studies (LCPS) and Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (2007).

Framing the Other: America & Islam since 9/11. Invited chapter in Muslims in the Media, John Richardson and Elizabeth Poole, eds., I.B. Taurus (2006).

“Rewriting the Rules of Journalism.” Invited chapter in Al Jazeera at Ten Years, Al-Jazeera Foundation (Doha 2006).

Conference Presentations

Select Professional Talks/Panels (2005 – Present)

America & Islam. Panelist, 2nd International Symposium on Media and Islamophobia, Ankara, Turkey. March 15, 2022.

To Harm or Not to Harm: Defining ‘Harmful Content’. Moderator, Paris Peace Forum session with Danish Tech ambassador and representatives of YouTube and the Facebook & Instagram Oversight Board. Nov. 12, 2021.

Truth be told: Fighting fake news and sharing reliable information. Panelist, Paris Peace Forum. Nov. 12, 2021.

Western Media Coverage of the Middle East. Presentation at the TRT World Forum: Envisioning Peace & Security in a Fragmented World. Istanbul, Oct. 2018.

The Arab Media’s Counter-Revolution: Implications for media development around the world. Presentation to the Middle East division, and media development experts from across the U.S. government, at the US Agency for International Development, Washington, D.C. June 30, 2017.

Covering Islam. Organized and moderated panel at the Excellence in Journalism conference (SPJ/ RTDNA/NAJA). New Orleans, Sept. 19, 2016.

The Future of Journalism. Organized and moderated a “summit” of news leaders from the Pacific Northwest and national experts exploring industry trends in the region, in partnership with The Seattle Times. Seattle, April 2016.

Egypt Media Reform. Moderator of closing session on the state of journalism under the Sisi regime. Egypt-American Dialogue. Washington, D.C., Oct. 2014.

The Impact of Foreign Conflicts on American Muslims. World Affairs Council, Toledo, OH, Oct. 2014 (Carnegie Corp. of NY speaker series on Islam in the Public Sphere).

The YouTube Effect: How Agitprop shapes America’s relationship with Islam. World Affairs Council, Portland, OR and Spokane, WA, Oct. 2012 (Carnegie Corp. of NY speaker series on Islam in the Public Sphere).

Perspectives on Islam. McCormick Specialized Journalism Institute, Freedom Forum First Amendment Center, Vanderbilt, Univ., Nashville, TV August 2012.

Media, Islam and the New Arab Journalist. Digital Religion: Knowledge, Politics and Practice Series. Center for Media, Culture and History, New York University. Oct. 5, 2011.

Islam and the Media. Session panelist at NewsXchange, annual conference of news chiefs from U.S., Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Valencia, Spain, Nov. 2008.

Media and Conflict. 2nd World Peace Forum, Muhammadiyah, Indonesia. June 2008.

Media and Polarization. Panelist, UN Alliance of Civilizations First Annual Forum. Madrid, Jan. 16, 2008.

Al-Jazeera. Panelist for event in the New York Museum of Television and Radio series on Arab media. New York, May 2007.

Media and Democracy. Panel participant at Arab Broadcast Forum, aired live on Abu Dhabi TV, al-Jazeera Moubashar and BBC Arabic. Abu Dhabi, May 2007.

US-Arab World Communications, Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, April 23, 2007.

Background on the Crisis, chair of panel at Covering Darfur, workshop co-sponsored by the Adham Center at AUC and the International Crisis Group, April 19, 2007.

Turning Ten: Three broadcasters who have changed the media world. Host of talk format session on the growth of satellite television at the annual European Broadcast Union “NewsExchange” conference (also aired live on al Jazeera’s public affairs channel), Istanbul, Nov. 3, 2006.

Hearts, Minds & the Media in the Middle East. Member of panel moderated by Judith Kipper of the Council on Foreign Relations at the Monaco Media Forum, Oct. 21, 2006.

Media as an Agent of (Mis)Understanding. Presentation at annual retreat of Dr. Henry Kissinger’s International Council of the Museum of Television and Radio (now the Paley Center), made up of 50 CEOs/presidents of the world’s largest media conglomerates. Istanbul, Sept. 2006.

Covering the Other: Intolerance and Bigotry in the American and Arab Media. Member of panel at 4th Arab Thought Conference, Arab Thought Foundation. Dubai, Dec. 5, 2005.

Talking Points: Stereotypes and Othering in the Media. Talk at U.S.-Arab Media Forum, Aspen Institute; Dubai, Dec. 2, 2005.

A Matter of Identity: Urban Renewal in the Global Village. Talk at EuroMed and the Media conference; European Union summit. Barcelona; Nov. 26, 2006.

Implications of wider access to audio visual and new media. Talk at EuroMed and the Media conference; European Union. Dead Sea, Jordan; Sept. 27, 2005.

Academic Papers/Presentations (2005 – Present)

Islamophobia in the 2018 Midterms. Race, Gender, and Toxicity Online Workshop. Social Science Research Council (SSRC). University of Texas – Austin, April 25-26, 2019.

America & Islam: A Tortured Relationship. Semi-annual Roots of Contemporary Issues lecture, Washington State University. Nov. 8, 2018. Campus-wide lecture for students and the public.

American Muslims in the Age of Trump. Public lecture. Northwestern University Doha (Qatar). Feb. 18, 2018.

Prospects, Pitfalls & Practices in Covering Islam. Muslim Women and the Media Training Institute, Univ. of California, Davis. Feb. 2, 2018.

The Evolution of Journalism Education: Implications for Pakistan. Day-long workshop for Pakistani media educators. Centre for Excellence in Journalism, Karachi. May 2017.

Modernizing Journalism Education. Keynote address at the first International Marathon Conference on Media Education. Karachi University. Dec. 7, 2016.

Blogging the Revolution: New Journalism, New Politics and the New Arab Media. Inaugural Conference of the Program on Good Governance and Political Reform in the Arab World; Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law. Stanford University. May 11, 2010.

Between Terror TV & Borderless Journalism: Obama and the Arab Media. Arab Media Symposium: Information Evolution in the Arab World. Center for Contemporary Arab Studies, Georgetown University, March 22, 2010.

New Prisms in the Distorted Lens. Old and New Media: The Changing Faces of Islam. Religion, Media and International Affairs Project, The Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University. April 3, 2009.

Arab Media as Agenda-setters, Gatekeepers and Watchdogs. Presenter. The Role of the News Media in the Governance Reform Agenda, Harvard-World Bank Workshop, The Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy, The Kennedy School, May 2008.

Setting the Arab News Agenda. Panelist. London Middle East Institute, School of Oriental and African Studies. May 2008.

Journalist as Change Agent: Government repression, corporate feudalism and the new mission of Arab journalism. Keynote speech, Beirut Media Forum, Nov. 2007.

Separate but Not Equal: The View from Abroad. Presentation at “Immigration, Citizenship and the Mass Media” symposium, Univ. of Michigan, Feb. 2007.

Weaponization of the Media, Amsterdam Center for Conflict Studies, Amsterdam, Feb. 2007. Chair, “Journalists as Targets” panel; member, “News Organizations as Political Actors” panel.

Organizer and chair, “Arab Media Reform: Mapping the Terrain.” Symposium at the Center for Middle East and North African Studies, Univ. of Michigan. March 2006.

“Current Approaches to Teaching Television Journalism.” Qatar University, Doha; Oct. 2005.

Media & Identity: Why non-Arab Muslims now care about Arab issues. Presentation that the Conference on Media and European-Middle Eastern Relations: A Virtual Dialogue? Orient-Institute, Beirut. Oct. 2005.

Other Guest Lectures

School of Oriental and International Studies, London; Middle East Centre, St. Antony’s College, Oxford; Communication and Media Research Institute, University of Westminster, London; Edward R. Murrow Center, Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy, Tufts University; Stanford University; Center for Public Diplomacy, Annenberg School for Communication, University of Southern California; Graduate School of Journalism, University of California-Berkeley; Lahore University of Management Sciences, Pakistan; National Technological University, Singapore; University of the Pacific; Middle East Studies Center, University of California-Davis; United States Naval Academy; George Washington University; Qatar University; U.S. Dept. of State; U.S.-Indonesia Society; Aspen Institute, Washington, D.C.; 2nd Al-Jazeera Forum, Qatar.

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