Martin Armstrong

Journalist - Researcher - Director/Producer

Mid Level
London, United Kingdom
Locked Pro Plan feature


About me

After graduating from Edinburgh University with an MA in Religious Studies and MSc in Islamic & Middle Eastern Studies I spent five years working in the Middle East. Based in Lebanon I worked in both print and online journalism in rolls including as a feature writer, breaking news reporter, copy editor, photographer, and later as a desk editor in charge of a newsroom responsible for commissioning, delegating breaking news coverage, and the upload of copy to widely subscribed news websites. In addition to the UK, and Lebanon, I have worked in countries including Iraq, Syria, Turkey, Ethiopia, Tunisia, and Egypt. Now based in London, I am currently working on an exciting documentary project with Superfolk Films, an independent production company, and as a researcher and script-writer for a world-leading cultural consultancy.


  • Feature Writer
  • Editorial Copy
  • Interviewing
  • Arabic
  • Online Journalism
  • Print Journalism
  • Photo Editing
  • Social Media Management
  • Qualitative Research
  • News Reporting

Companies I’ve worked with

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      Met Film School

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        Superfolk Films

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          The New Arab (Al-Araby Al-Jadeed)

          Work history


          Consultant Researcher, Script Writer

          Barker Langham

          Jun 2018
          • London, United Kingdom
          • Freelance
          • In June 2018 I began work as a freelance Scriptwriter and Researcher for Barker Langham, one of the world's leading cultural consultancies. My work has encompassed conducting research and writing scripts for museum panels, interactive games, and audiovisual displays, and helping to translate video interviews conducted in Arabic into English - for exciting museum projects in the United Arab Emirates, focused on the country's rich culture and heritage.


          Sep 2017 - Dec 2017
          • London, United Kingdom
          • Full Time
          • Intensive course focused on developing theoretical understanding, and practical documentary-makingskills, including developing camera (Sony EX-3) and sound recording, and editing and post-production capabilities (Adobe Premiere Pro).


          Shift leader, journalist

          The New Arab (Al-Araby Al-Jadeed)

          Aug 2016 - Aug 2017
          • London, United Kingdom
          • Full Time
          • Covered breaking news from the Middle East region, including leading The New Arab's coverage of the Syrian Civil War. Worked regularly as shift leader in charge of busy newsroom, editing, uploading, and organising copy on website, identifying relevant copy from Arabic website for translation into English, and commissioning freelancers working throughout the MENA region, including from the front lines in Mosul, Iraq. Played key role in expansion of The New Arab's readership and raising editorial standards.


          Apr 2014 - May 2015
          • Beirut, Lebanon
          • Freelance
          • Produced weekly reports based on analysis of Lebanese and regional media, focusing on security, political, and economic developments and their potential affect on foreign investment climate, for clients seeking investment in Lebanon's offshore oil and gas industry.


          Journalist, Editor


          Feb 2013 - Aug 2016
          • Beirut, Lebanon
          • Freelance
          • Published breaking news and feature articles on range of political, social and cultural issues including in: Al-Jazeera, The Guardian, Middle East Eye, The Christian Science Monitor, Al-Monitor, Al-Arabiya, VICE, Syria Deeply, The Sunday Times, and So It Goes. Travelled and reported from Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Turkey, Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia, Oman, and Ethiopia. (*experience working in conflict zones*) Editor and ghost-writer: including copy, proof editing, and page design for Executive Magazine (monthly MENA-focused politics and business magazine), funding proposals, internal practice documents and mission statements for UNESCO Beirut Office, and editorial work with academic texts including "The Decline of Arab States and the Rise of Communitocracy," Salamey, Routledge, 2017. Video-work as runner, camera assistant on short-documentary "Beirut's Cafe Racers", Audio Kultur, 2016, and voice-over work for "Lebanon Wins the World Cup" (2015), winner of Best Documentary short at Warsaw Film Festival (2016), and Santa Barbra Film Festival (2016).


          Feature Writer, Reporter, Web Editor

          The (Lebanon) Daily Star

          Apr 2012 - Jan 2013
          • Beirut, Lebanon
          • Full Time
          • Published stories - breaking news and features - on weekly basis based on beat reporting on breaking news events in Lebanon and Syria. Filled in as online desk editor, editing, uploading content to, and organising The Daily Star website.


          Communications-Research Intern

          Carnegie Middle East Centre

          Nov 2011 - Apr 2012
          • Beirut, Lebanon
          • Internship
          • Helped organize conference events and roundtables at Carnegie's Middle East Centre in Beirut involving politicians from the Tunisian Nahda Party, Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood, the Lebanese government, journalists from the New York Times, and the Head of the World Bank. Researched and edited Carnegie paper on sectarian dynamics in the Armed Forces in post-Saddam Iraq with resident scholar Maria Fantappie.


          Asia and Middle East Research Intern

          Y Care International

          Mar 2011 - Aug 2011
          • London, United Kingdom
          • Internship
          • Compiled research contributing to Asia and Middle East desk's internal review and formulation of a new strategy for operations for 2011-2014, focusing on social welfare issues facing Palestinian communities in Levantine states. Research for and editing of funding proposals to DFID and European Union for charity's projects aimed at increasing sustainability of Palestinian communities in the West Bank.



          3 A Grades at A level (English, Religious Studies, History, and one A grade in AS Art

          Charterhouse School

          Jul 2014
          • Godalming, United Kingdom


          MSc Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies

          The University of Edinburgh

          Sep 2009 - Sep 2010
          • Edinburgh, United Kingdom
          • 15,000 word dissertation on institutional development of Shia Islam as a political force, and "state religion" in pre-modern Iran. In depth study of Islamic ideologues whose discourse has inspired the development of post-revolutionary Iran (Shariati, Al-e Ahmed, Khomeini), and modern militant Islamism (e.g. Mawdudi, Hassan al-Banna, and Sayd Qutb)


          MA Religious Studies: First Class Honours

          The University of Edinburgh

          Sep 2005 - Jul 2009
          • Edinburgh, United Kingdom
          • 10,000 word dissertation on perceptions of afterlife in Islamic Medieval theological and philosophical tradition. Developed strong background knowledge of Islamic theology and Middle Eastern history, in addition to Islamic jurisprudence and Shariah law through study of specifically focused modules.



          HEFAT (Hostile Environment First Aid Training) Certified

          RPS Partnership

          • Completed a three-day intensive course lead by a former marine with over 20 years of military experience. Participated in both in-class training and scenarios l aimed to simulate situations that journalists may realistically face in the field, covering topics including: Emergency first aid, Digital Security, Situational Awareness, Kidnapping/Navigating Checkpoints/Reaction under Gunfire