Raza Ahmad Rumi is a Pakistani writer and a public policy specialist currently based in Ithaca, USA. He is the Director, Park Center for Independent Media, Ithaca College and has been teaching in Journalism department since 2015. He is also visiting faculty at Cornell Institute for Public Affairs and teaches courses in international development and public policy. Earlier, Raza was a global faculty fellow at the Gallatin School, New York University (Spring 2016).
Raza was a fellow at New America Foundation (2014); United States Institute of Peace (Sept 2014-March 2015), a fellow at National Endowment for Democracy (summer 2016); and currently a member of Think Tank at Laboratory for Global Performance and Politics, Georgetown University. He is also a senior fellow at the Jinnah Institute in Islamabad.
In recent years, Raza founded a digital media platform NayaDaur Media in collaboration with Pakistani diaspora in the United States. It is a bilingual multimedia portal with a Youtube channel. From 2017-2019, Raza was also the editor of Pakistan’s national newspaper Daily Times. From 2005-2017, he was affiliated with weekly The Friday Times in various editorial positions. Raza was also a commentator and a current affairs talk show host in Pakistan and was affiliated with the Express TV, Pakistan before he left Pakistan in 2014. He contributes regularly to Foreign Policy, Huffington Post, New York Times, The Diplomat, Fair Observer, CNN and Al Jazeera, Daily O, Scroll India, The Hindu and Indian Express. His columns for the Express Tribune can be accessed here.
Prior to his foray in journalism, Raza worked as a governance and capacity development specialist for the Asian Development Bank, the Government of Pakistan, a number of Pakistani nongovernmental organizations, and the United Nations Mission in Kosovo. He has also been an academic adviser to the Network of Asia Pacific Schools and Institutes of Public Administration and Governance (NAPSIPAG); a public policy adviser to LEAD Pakistan, a nonprofit focused on sustainable development; and was an advisory board member of both the ASR Resource Centre and the South Asian Institute of Women’s Studies in Lahore. As a freelance policy professional/consultant he continues to advise international development organizations, governments and NGOs.
Books: He is also the author of Delhi by Heart: Impressions of a Pakistani Traveler (Harper Collins, 2013); The Fractious Path: Pakistan’s Democratic Transition (2016); Identity, Faith and Conflict: Essays on Pakistan & Beyond (2017); and Being Pakistani–Essays on Arts, Culture & Society (2018).
He holds a Bachelor’s in Economics and a Masters in Social Planning, both from the London School of Economics. He has also been trained in law and public administration at the Civil Services Academy in Lahore.
In March 2014, he survived an assassination attempt in which his driver lost his life. Within weeks, he left Pakistan for security reasons. [Read this post by Committee to Protect Journalists].
P.S. Jahane Rumi started as a blog and now a personal a website devoted to Sufi thought, the arts, literature, and cultures of South Asia. Raza also set up cyber-magazines Pak Tea House & Lahore Nama . ‘Raza Rumi’ was adopted as a nom de plume in 2005 to keep his personal writings and opinions separate from the day job[s] in government and development institutions. Raza Rumi’s alter-ego has several development reports, academic and policy publications to his credit.