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David Pollock

Bernstein Fellow
Director, Project Fikra

Tel: 202-230-9550 (media inquiries only) 202-452-0650 (all other inquiries)
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David Pollock is the Bernstein Fellow at The Washington Institute, focusing on regional political dynamics and related issues.

Areas of Expertise

Iraq, Israel, North Africa, Palestinians, Arab and Islamic Politics, Arab-Israeli Relations, Democracy and Reform, Peace Process

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Biography

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. decisionmakers 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.

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Education

Ph.D., Harvard University; B.A., Harvard College

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Languages Spoken / Read

  • Arabic
  • French
  • Hebrew

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Publications

The Lines That Bind: 100 Years of Sykes-Picot

December 19, 2016

Policy Focus

Syrian Kurds as a U.S. Ally:

November 18, 2016

Policy Focus

Mixed Messages:

April 20, 2016

Policy Focus

Actions, Not Just Attitudes:

June 17, 2010

Policy Focus

Slippery Polls:

April 11, 2008

Policy Focus

Kuwait: Keystone of U.S. Gulf Policy

November 6, 2007

Policy Focus

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Most Recent Analysis

New Data on Iraqi Political Trends:

Parsing the Regional Implications

November 8, 2018

New Polls: West Bankers Oppose Both Armed Revolt and U.S. Talks

November 8, 2018

New Polls Show Most Gazans Want Israeli Jobs, Not Hamas Mobs

October 29, 2018

How Is the Saudi Public Likely Responding to the Crisis over Khashoggi’s Disappearance? The Popularity of Riyadh’s “Reformist Repression”

October 16, 2018

New Saudi Views of Jews—and of Israel

September 12, 2018

Seeing Saudi Changes Up Close: A Week's Worth of Surprises

August 13, 2018

If a Trump-Iran Summit Happens, Ayatollah So

June 18, 2018

Iran, Israel, Syria, and the U.S.: Views From China

June 6, 2018

Arab Media on Bolton, Pompeo, North Korea

March 23, 2018

How to Stop the War Between Turkey and the Syrian Kurds

January 25, 2018

See all analysis by this author