Matt Freear has worked in media and communications for more than 17 years, specialising in communications around conflict and terrorism since 2005. He started his career in the UK civil service communications network, working in media relations, crisis communication roles and in the Strategic Communications Unit of the Prime Minister’s Office, Downing Street.
He was posted to manage communications teams in Iraq, Afghanistan and Washington DC, handling diplomatic, security and international issues. Since leaving the civil service he has consulted for the African Union Mission to Somalia, the United Nations, the European Union Delegation to Kenya and the US Embassy in Libya.
He lived in Kenya for more than 4 years. He currently consults for EU counter-terrorism related programmes in Africa and the Middle East and for an international media development organisation. Having worked on political and security communications in fragile states for over ten years, he is interested in research into media and communications solutions to reduce conflict and prevent violent extremism. He has conducted peer-reviewed research and writing on peacekeeping in Africa, stabilisation in Syria, the conflict in Somalia and communications by terrorist groups. He has managed communications activities and research under STRIVE in Kenya.