Human Security as a Conceptual Framework: The Case of Palestinian Journalists

Carol B. Schwalbe, Jeannine E. Relly, Sally Ann Cruikshank, Ethan H. Schwalbe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


This exploratory study introduces a human security framework to examine the challenges that journalists face from daily professional and societal constraints and pressures when attempting to fulfill their role to inform the public in areas of conflict. The research focuses on the influences on Palestinian journalists in one of the most challenging regions in the world for independently reporting the news. Our framework includes seven dimensions of human security: personal, organizational, community/societal, economic, political, geographic, and infrastructural. Our study found that the Palestinian media are military targets, and journalists face direct and indirect censorship by the Israeli government as well as the Palestinian Authority and Hamas. Although we have adapted this framework for the Palestinian case in particular, the spheres of these influences on human security would likely pertain to other insecure situations for journalists. Applying this framework to journalism studies could open new avenues of academic discovery to analyze human security beyond violence, safety, and risk. Our main contribution, we suggest, is building out a human security framework for academic journalism studies in contested, conflict-prone, and post-conflict areas around the world.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1920-1939
Number of pages20
JournalJournalism Studies
Issue number13
StatePublished - 2019


  • Gaza Strip
  • Palestinian journalists
  • West Bank
  • human security
  • news media
  • press freedom

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication


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