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Samar Samir Mezghanni

Samar Samir  Mezghanni

PhD Candidate, Middle Eastern Studies


I am a Tunisian/Iraqi writer and activist. Prior to joining the University of Cambridge, I studied Communication and Culture at the University of Birmingham and Psychology at the University of Tunis Al Manar. I was appointed in September 2016 as one of 17 United Nations Young Leaders for the Sustainable Development Goals selected from a pool of 18000 nominations worldwide.

Throughout my studies and after obtaining my Master degree, I worked with several international organizations such as the United Nations, the British Council, CIVICUS, the International Monetary Fund and the League of Arab States as a consultant, fellow or project manager.

I started writing stories when I was seven years old and obtained two records in Guinness Book for World Records as the youngest writer in the world in 2000 and the most prolific writer in the world in 2002. I have written over a hundred short stories for children and published 14 books. Some of these stories were turned into a TV program for children.

I was honoured to receive many awards and certifications for my work from different leaders, foundations and associations. I was classified as one of the most influential Arab women in 2013 and one of the most important young leaders in the Arab region in 2012. I am a member of various International and Regional NGOs. My work focuses on youth empowerment and I train young people on debate, communication and public speaking skills. I have delivered speeches in over 20 countries.

Subject groups/Research projects

Arabic & Persian Studies:

Research Interests

I am interested in creative writing and Arab literature. My research looks at British Muslims newspapers and analyses the discourse in comparison to mainstream press. Academically, I am interested in Media Discourse and Muslims in the UK and Europe.



Key Publications


I have published 14 storybooks in Arabic and French. I have also contributed to other writers’ publications with articles or essays on children’s literature.

I have two academic publications:

- The Journal of North African Studies Reinforcing citizenship through civil society and media partnerships: the case of community radios (published in 2014):

- American University of Cairo and British Council study on Arab youth perceptions post-Arab-spring The Revolutionary Promise (published in 2013):