Professional role perceptions among Iraqi Kurdish journalists from a 'state within a state'

Jeannine E. Relly, Maggy Zanger, Shahira Fahmy

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Twenty years after a foreign intervention in Iraqi Kurdistan during Saddam Hussein's authoritarian rule, this study found that Kurdish journalists' professional role perceptions appear, to an extent, to reflect liberal democratic news media values. The study used the hierarchy-of-influences framework to examine determinants of professional role perceptions among Iraqi Kurdish journalists (N = 175), who interacted with democratic institutions more than a decade longer than the rest of the country. The 'Watchdog' role perception model was the strongest of eight models in the study with influences including Western news media training, Internet use frequency, and 'democrat' political ideology over 'Nationalist'. Furthermore, the 'Islamist' ideology had a stronger influence than 'democrat' on 'Watchdog' role perceptions, potentially indicating these perspectives, at times, may be embraced by groups not within the ruling parties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1085-1106
Number of pages22
Issue number8
StatePublished - Nov 1 2015


  • Democratic institutions
  • Iraqi Kurds
  • hierarchy of influences
  • journalism professionalism
  • professional role perceptions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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