Divya holds an MA (with merit) in International Political Communication from the University of Sheffield, and a BA (Honours) in English from Miranda House at the University of Delhi.
After graduating with a BA in 2004, she worked in India for seven years as a journalist across print and television media. She wrote and reported for the country's largest and highly reputed media organisations including the Times Group and the India Today Group. During her career she reported on a wide range of subjects including art, entertainment, crime, terrorism, natural calamities, infrastructure and health; and specialised particularly in real-time 'live' reporting, covering politics, elections, civil unrest and civil aviation. She also gained experience in public relations and media management for a political party during India's 2014 national elections.
Returning to academia, for her masters dissertation in 2013-14 she compared western media representation of Iran and Iraq in the light of Iran's nuclear program and Iraq's weapons of mass destruction. Through statistical analysis she concluded that western media representation of both countries was biased negatively but less prejudiced towards Iran as compared to Iraq.
Research and teaching
Furthering her work at the MA level, Divya's PhD research aims to explore the role perceptions and journalistic practices of British and Indian journalists who have covered conflicts between 1998 and 2003. While a large body of scholarly research exists on the practices and perceptions of journalists in the UK, relatively there is much less available on their Indian counterparts, who have historically been influenced by the British Empire which ruled India for over 200 years until India's independence in 1947. The nature of conflicts covered by both sets of journalists also lends itself to comparison – Indian journalists have simply not covered international conflicts such as Kosovo (1998), Afghanistan (2001) and Iraq (2003) in the way that their British counterparts have. In fact Indians have concentrated on conflicts closer-to-home, particularly with neighbour Pakistan including the Kargil War (1999) and the India-Pakistan military stand-off (2001-02).
In addition to pursuing her PhD, Divya has been a teaching assistant at the University. She has conducted seminars for the module Propaganda, Media and Conflict in a Changing World for MA students; and is presently conducting seminars for the module Free Speech and Censorship for undergraduates.
Role perceptions and journalistic practices of British and Indian journalists covering conflicts between 1998 and 2003 – a comparative study
Dr John Steel