Nazmul Ahasan is a journalist and researcher with experience in data, investigative journalism, and social science research. Since last summer, he has worked at the Investigative Reporting Workshop (IRW), partnering with The Washington Post and the Public Health Watch on investigative stories.
Nazmul has a penchant for taking up high-voltage political projects.
For The Post, he contributed to a major data story on GOP nominees who dispute the results of elections as well as the paper’s coverage of the Maryland and D.C. local elections. In March, he wrote an A1 story for The San Francisco Chronicle on how a company with roots in the Bay Area relied on internet entrepreneurs in faraway lands who inflamed U.S. political divisions to sell merchandise.
Until recently, he worked at the Investigative Reporting Program (IRP), where he was part of a team of reporters and researchers investigating instances of police use of force leading to deaths and serious injuries in California. Drawing upon his experience analyzing hundreds of such cases, Nazmul wrote a lengthy essay in Foreign Policy debunking the false equivalences between extrajudicial executions in Bangladesh, his home country, and police shootings and violence in the U.S.
As an independent journalist, he covered wide-ranging issues such as the Rohingya refugee crisis, rights abuses, politics, and the covid-19 pandemic in Bangladesh. His reportage, op-eds, or reporting contribution appeared in major news publications such as The Telegraph, The Economist, The Columbia Journalism Review, Haaretz, Devex, The Hindu, Scroll, Al Arabiya, and The Wire. As a commentator, he has been interviewed by Al Jazeera, BBC Radio Newshour, and Newslaundry, among others.
At the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism, Nazmul pursues a Master of Journalism degree supported by the Berkeley Journalism Fellowship and Subir Chowdhury Fellowship on Quality of Life in Bangladesh. Nazmul is also a recipient of the 2022 South Asian Journalists Association (SAJA) Scholarship.
Before moving to San Francisco Bay Area from Dhaka, Bangladesh, Nazmul worked at The Daily Star, Bangladesh’s largest English-language newspaper, where his weekly column chronicled the country’s gradual descent into authoritarianism. The column delved into unfair and unfree elections, soaring inequality, and human rights violations such as extrajudicial executions and enforced disappearances. For the paper’s weekly magazine, Star Weekend, Ahasan reported on the environment and marginalized communities such as slum dwellers, Dalit, and Rohingya people.
He co-authored a research paper on Bangladesh’s student politics as a chapter in ‘Masks of Authoritarianism: Hegemony, Power and Public Life in Bangladesh’ published by Palgrave Macmillan, UK. He has also jointly written a country case study on the state of Bangladesh’s academic freedom. Commissioned by the Global Public Policy Institute (GPPi), a leading global think tank in Berlin, Germany, the study will be published as part of a book by Routledge in December 2022.
In 2018, Nazmul Ahasan graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from Daffodil International University in Dhaka, Bangladesh, where he founded and edited its first student-run print newspaper, The Unmesh.
University of California, Berkeley, Master of Journalism, ‘23
AWARDS & HONORS
Subir Chowdhury Fellowship on Quality of Life in Bangladesh
Berkeley Journalism Fellowship
South Asian Journalists Association Scholarship, 2022
PUBLICATIONS & OTHER WORK
The Washington Post, Aug. 15, 2022 — Election deniers march toward power in key 2024 battlegrounds, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/08/15/election-deniers-march-toward-power-key-2024-battlegrounds/
The San Francisco Chronicle, Mar. 24, 2022 — Internet entrepreneurs far from the U.S. are inflaming political division on Facebook to sell T-shirts and coffee mugs, https://www.sfchronicle.com/bayarea/article/Facebook-GearLaunch-17024417.php
Devex, Aug. 25, 2022 — 5 years on, Rohingyas in Bangladesh face hostility and dwindling aid, https://www.devex.com/news/5-years-on-rohingyas-in-bangladesh-face-hostility-and-dwindling-aid-103860
Foreign Policy, Jan. 4, 2022 — Dhaka’s denial of extrajudicial killings is imperiling its relations with Washington and exposing the country’s corrupt police and undemocratic institutions.
The Washington Post, Jun. 22, 2022 — Bowser seeks to follow Marion Barry, but some Black voters are skeptical, https://www.washingtonpost.com/dc-md-va/2022/06/22/bowser-white-black-divide-dc/
The Economist, Jun. 6, 2020 — Covid-19 infections are rising fast in Bangladesh, India and Pakistan, https://www.economist.com/asia/2020/06/06/covid-19-infections-are-rising-fast-in-bangladesh-india-and-pakistan
The Telegraph, Jun. 11, 2020 — Coronavirus Exposes the Deep Divide in Bangladeshi Society, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/global-health/climate-and-people/coronavirus-exposes-deep-divide-bangladeshi-society/
Haaretz, May. 14, 2020 — Not Recognizing Israel Is a Moral Choice, Above All, https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-for-bangladesh-not-recognizing-israel-is-a-moral-choice-above-all-1.8845264
Columbia Journalism Review, Sep. 20, 2021 — Infection and Repression, https://www.cjr.org/widescreen/journalism-and-covid-map-me.php/
MEMBERSHIPS & AFFILIATIONS
South Asian Journalists Association, Member
Investigative Reporters and Editors, Member
Asian American Journalists Association, Member
REPORTING INTERESTSBreaking News, Data Journalism, Investigative Journalism, OSINT