Bernstein Fellow, The Washington Institute for Near East Studies
Director, Project Fikra
David Pollock, the
Bernstein fellow at The Washington Institute, focuses on the political dynamics
of Middle East countries. He is the director of Project Fikra, a program of
research, publication, and network-building designed to generate policy ideas
for promoting positive change and countering the spread of extremism in the
Middle East. At the forefront of this effort is Fikra Forum, a unique Arabic-English bilingual online
platform that promotes exchanges between mainstream Muslims and Arab democrats
and U.S. decision makers and opinion leaders.
Dr. Pollock served
previously as senior advisor for the Broader Middle East at the State
Department, a post he assumed in 2002. In that capacity, he provided policy
advice on issues of democracy and reform in the region, with a focus on women's
rights. He also helped launch the department's $15 million Iraqi Women's
Democracy Initiative and the U.S.-Afghan Women's Council, working directly with
advocates across the Middle East.
From 1996 to 2001, Dr.
Pollock served in several other State Department policy advisory positions
covering South Asia and the Middle East, including four years as regional
expert on the secretary of state's Policy Planning Staff. Previously, he was
chief of Near East/South Asia/Africa research at the U.S. Information Agency,
where he supervised the government's study of public opinion, elite attitudes,
and media content across the three regions. In 1995-1996, he was a
scholar-in-residence at The Washington Institute, where he authored the widely
read Policy Paper The 'Arab Street'? Public Opinion in the Arab World.
Dr. Pollock has served
as a visiting lecturer at Harvard University and as assistant professor at
George Washington University. He has traveled widely in the Middle East and
maintains a large network of contacts in government, academia, and business
throughout the region.