This is a collaborative project involving faculty members, graduate students, and undergraduate students with research and teaching interest in modern Islamic societies and southwest Asia and north Africa. The lead researcher of this project is Prof. Ahmed E. Souaiaia.

The first protest movement that ignited a series of events popularly known as the "Arab Spring" started in Tunisia in late 2010. Since then, the entire region (Southwest Asia, Eurasia, North Africa, and Northeast Africa all experienced significant changes. By 2015, and once Russia became directly involved in the Syrian war, the 2011 protest movements have virtually transformed into a Global War involving all regional and global powers. We wanted to document these transformative events in a number of ways.
In addition to collecting documents, interviews, and videos from all actors, we decided to "capture" main website homepages of key news-outlets from around the word to study the nature of the bias that drives their coverage of events (see sample screenshots). By the end of 2016, we built a collection of thousands of screenshots that capturing stunning moments, recording the first reaction of editors and actors to events as they happen, unaided by hindsight. We, then, decided to make this project a longitudinal study that covers at least 10 years. The raw data is entered into a database that will allow researchers--now and in the future--to analyze, interpret, and explain key events and the way such events are covered by the media. The raw data consist of screenshots of news-outlets, journalism sites, and some social media accounts from around the world in many languages. With that being the case, we welcome students and researchers who are seriously interested in understanding the 2011 wars to join in. We are especially looking for team members who are fluent in languages or the regions and parties involved including, Turkish, Persian, Arabic, French, Russian, and Chinese. Team members don't have to be resident at the University of Iowa since we use data-sharing applications hosted via cloud-computing, which allow us to access digital content and hold virtual discussions. Team members meet on the first Wednesday of every month for brainstorming session (and pizza).

Research Team Members:
(current and alum)
Jaimie Huskins
Jenna Miller
Madison Hanke
Jessica Nelson
Jack Mason
Sumeyye Pakdil
Chiaki Watanabe

Carla Anderson
Jacob Havel
Mohammed Abdellatif
Katie Hastloff
Yoko Nakamura
Sarah Gayda
Daniel N. Valentin