Roja Zaitoonie


  • Nov 2012 – Dec 2015: M.A. in Social Science (Globalization, Transnationalization and Governance), Ruhr University Bochum
  • Sep 2013 – Sep 2014: LL.M. in Human Rights, Democracy and Global Justice, University of Valencia
  • Oct 2008 – Oct 2012: B.A in Social Science (Culture, Individuals and Society) and Media Studies, Ruhr University Bochum
  • Sep 2010 – Sep 2011: Erasmus in Audiovisual Communication, University of Valencia

Academic Work Experience 

  • since Jul 2018: PhD fellow @ Erich Brost Institute for International Journalism, Dortmund and Ruhr University Bochum
  • Mar 2015 – Apr 2015: Intern @ German Parliament (Bundestag), Berlin, Scientific Services, Division for Foreign Affairs, International Law, Economic Cooperation and Development, Defence, Human Rights and Humanitarian Assistance
  • Apr 2012 – Mar 2014: Scientific Assistant @ Chair of Comparative Politics, Ruhr University Bochum

Social and Humanitarian Work Experience

  • Aug 2016 – Jun 2017: Program Coordinator @ German Children and Youth Foundation, Berlin
  • Feb 2016 – May 2016: Intern and Project Coordinator @ German Foreign Office, Berlin, Division for Humanitarian Assistance and Humanitarian Demining
  • Oct 2015 – Jan 2016: Social Worker in a refugee camp @ Malteser Germany, Düsseldorf
  • Jan 2014 – Sep 2014: Intern and Volunteer @ Spanish Commission for Refugee Aid (CEAR), Valencia

Research Focus and Interests

  • Media Development, Press Freedom, Public Sphere, United Nations, Human Rights, Peace and Conflict Studies, Cosmopolitanism and Global Citizenship, Discrimination, Intercultural Communication, International Cooperation, Humanitarian Assistance, Global Justice, International Humanitarian Law, Post-Colonialism, Social Inequality, International Relations, Sociology, Political Theory and Legal Philosophy 

PhD Project


From Idea to Reality?

The UN Efforts on Media Development in Fragile and (Post-)Conflict Contexts 


Until today, the United Nations (UN) has undertaken numerous efforts in order to promote peace and security through media development. Various actors in the UN system, including main organs, such as the General Assembly, the Security Council, the United Nations Economic And Social Council (ECOSOC) and the Secretariat, as well as subsidiary organs, such as UNESCO, the Department of Public Information (DPI), the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO), have generated, adopted and implemented different measures to improve the media coverage in fragile and (post )conflict contexts. Despite of the fact – or because of the fact – that media development is a cross-sectional topic affecting the entire UN system, the UN’s efforts on media development in fragile and (post-)conflict contexts constitute a highly fragmented sphere. Yet, not only the UN efforts on media development in fragile and (post-)conflict contexts, but also the scientific landscape dealing with media development in fragile and (post-)conflict contexts is rather fragmented. My PhD project aims to analyse the UN efforts on media development in fragile and (post-)conflict contexts and investigate in which degree the UN has been able to transcend its efforts from idea to reality. The results from the analysis form the basis on which practice-oriented suggestions for improvement should be placed.



Prof. Dr. Barbara Thomaß, Ruhr University Bochum


  • Zaitoonie, Roja (2014), Between Idealism and Realism – The Global Governance of Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament (master’s thesis), online available


  • Jul 2019 – "The Achievements and Challenges of the United Nations’ General Assembly in the Field of Media and Public Communication" @ IAMCR, Madrid
  • Oct 2015 – "Between Idealism and Realism – The Global Governance of Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament" @ German Red Cross, Alsfeld
  • Feb 2014 – "Detención incomunicada en España" (Working Paper for the Open Society Justice Initative) @ Second International Congress on Security, Justice and Criminal Law, Valencia





Erich Brost Institute

Dr Dirk-Claas Ulrich
Program Director MEDAS 21

Otto-Hahn-Str. 2

44227 Dortmund


Tel: +49 231 755-6976


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