Dr. Nadia Oweidat teaches Modern Islamic Thought at Georgetown University. For the past ten years, Dr. Oweidat has dedicated her research to identifying strategies for promoting critical thinking, tolerance, and pluralism in the Middle East. In the process, Dr. Oweidat has co-authored several studies for the Rand Corporation, including The Kefaya Movement and Barriers to the Broad Dissemination of Creative Works in the Arab World (RAND 2008). Her expertise spans a wide range of contemporary issues such as Islamic extremism and counter-terrorism, the relationship between Iran and the Arab world, the radicalization of Muslim youth, and the Arab Spring.
Born and raised in Jordan, she holds a B.A. in English Literature from the University of Jordan, a M.A. in International Studies from the University of Wyoming, and a Ph.D. in Islamic Thought from Oxford University, where she was awarded the prestigious Weidenfeld Leadership Scholarship. Her academic work illuminates currents of Islamic thought that advocate the separation of religion and politics. In 2014, she was chosen by the Council of the United States and Italy to participate in its 30th Annual Young Leaders Conference in Italy.
Dr. Oweidat is currently a non-residential Senior Fellow at the New America Foundation. For the past year, she has been conducting research on Internet trends and social media patterns among Arab youth for various clients, including Google Inc. Dr Oweidat is currently developing a collaborative online platform that will give visibility to Arabic speakers who share her commitment for freedom of thought and expression in the Middle East. Dr. Oweidat is on the Advisory Board of MALA, the Muslim American Leadership Alliance and a Board Member at the International Center for Religion and Diplomacy. She regularly speaks about creative strategies to counter violent extremism on various Arabic and English news networks including the BBC, CNN, Al-Jazeera Arabic, France 24, and National Public Radio.