Susan Dun is an associate professor in residence in the Communication Program at Northwestern University
in Qatar. She holds a joint appointment as a senior lecturer in the Communication Studies
Department in the School of Communication, Northwestern University, Evanston. She has been a professor at the Qatar campus since its inception in 2008.

Her research program investigates the intersection between globalization and attempts to develop soft power via sports and health initiatives in the Arab world. Her research focuses on assessing and understanding how the changes brought by globalization and soft power grabs have affected sports activities and health behaviors as well as advanced nations’ agendas. Developing message-based interventions to change sports and health attitudes and behaviors is a key component of her research, which has primarily focused on Qatar, a rapidly developing country. The growth, fueled by soft power ambitions, especially in the world of sports such as the buildup for the 2022 FIFA World Cup has negatively affected health, including a massive increase in NCD levels, significant questions about the conditions for migrant workers, and many preventable deaths from traffic accidents in poorly designed and overcrowded roads. Her research examines and addresses these issues.

She teaches courses in health communication, sport communication, research methods,
persuasion and social influence, and organizational communication practices in the internship seminar.

She holds a PhD in speech communication from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign,
a Master’s in communication from Miami University, and a Bachelor’s in political science from
Gonzaga University.


  • MIT 201 Research Methods in Communication
  • MIT 298 Undergraduate Seminar: Health Communication
  • MIT 205 Theories of Persuasion
  • MIT 349 Internship Seminar
  • MIT 099 Academic Success
  • Comm_St 241 Theories of Relational Communication
  • Comm­_St 395 Special Topics: Social Support


  • Interventions to change health and safety behaviors such as driving and physical activity
  • Evaluation of sport and physical activity campaigns for at-risk migrant workers
  • Women’s sport and physical activity in Qatar
  •  Evaluation of social media coverage of Qatar, host country for FIFA Men’s World Cup 2022


Co-PI Year 3, 2022 (LPI Jin, S. J.). QNRF National Research Priorities on Assessing Qatari Emerging Media (VR/AR) Engagement.

Co-PI 2019-2022 (LPI Tarlochan, F.) QNRF National Research Priorities on Dangerous Driving Behavior Interventions Through the Usage of Telematics Data: Application to Young Drivers in Qatar.

LFM (2019-2021). QNRF Undergraduate Research Experience Program. Keep Them Safe: Encouraging the Use of Child Car Seat Restraints in Qatar. 

LFM (2017-2018). QNRF Undergraduate Research Experience Program for Assessing and Improving Migrant Workers Access to and Utilization of Health Information and Resources.

LFM (2014-2015). QNRF Undergraduate Research Experience Program for Chicken is for the Birds: Changing the Deadly Driving Behaviors of Young Qatari Men.

LFM (2013-2014). QNRF Undergraduate Research Experience Program for Development of a Survey-based Tool to Measure Digital literacy in Qatar

LFM (2012-2013). QNRF Undergraduate Research Experience Program for Catalysts and Constraints: Women's and Girls' Experience of Physical Activity and Sport in Qatar.


Dun, S. A., Rachdi, H., Memon, S. A., Pillai, R. K., Mejova, Y. & Weber, I. (2022). Perceptions of FIFA Men’s World Cup 2022 host nation Qatar in the Twittersphere. International Journal of Sport Communication 15(3).

Dun, S. A., Humam, M., Das, N., & Muneeb Ur-Rehmam, M. 2022. Sports and leisure campaigns for migrant workers in Qatar. Managing Sport and Leisure. DOI 10.1080/23750472.2022.2026245

Dun, S. A. (2019). Opposing sides: Integrating Qatar’s migrant labourers into local football fandom for the 2022 World Cup. In Qatar: Political, Economic and Social Issues. (pp. 249-262). Ed. H. Alkhateeb, Nova Publishers: New York.

Dun, S. A. & Ali, A. (2018) “Seatbelts don’t save lives:” Discovering and targeting the attitudes and behaviors of young Arab male drivers. Accident Analysis and Prevention, 121. 185-193.

Dun, S. A. (2016). Role models in the media and women’s sport participation in Qatar. Nidaba: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Middle Eastern Studies, 1(1), 48-58.

Dun, S. A. & Azmi, U. K. (2016). Uniting the players: Qatar’s domestic fan challenges for the 2022 FIFA World Cup. In Colin Howley and Susan Dun (Eds.) The Playing Field: Making Sense of Spaces and Places in Sporting Cultures. (pp. 81-92). Inter-Disciplinary Press: Oxford.

Dun, S. A. (2014). Against all odds: Surmounting the challenges of the FIFA 2022 World Cup in Qatar. In Andrea Talentino and Dikaia Chatziefstathiou, (Eds), International Sport. Oxford, UK: Inter-Disciplinary Press.

Dun, S. A. (2014). No beer, no way! Football fan identity enactment won’t mix with Muslim beliefs in the Qatar 2022 World Cup. Alcohol Special Issue of the Journal for Policy Research in Tourism, Leisure and Events, 6(2), 186-199.

Dun, S.A., & Kalaji, M. (2014). The unintended effects of international events hosting: Expanding opportunities for Muslim women in sport. In S. A. Dun, K. Spracklen, & N. Wise, (Eds.), Game Changer: The Transformative Potential of Sport. Oxford, UK: Inter-Disciplinary Press.

Dun, S. A., & Brander, J. (2014). Is there an app to track that? The effect of mobile devices on the culture of fitness centres. In Sabine Bauman and Monica Flegel (Eds.), Cyber Cultures. Oxford, UK: Inter-Disciplinary Press.

Dun, S. A., & Kalaji, M. (2013).  Trickle down sports: International sporting events hosting changes attitudes towards Muslim women’s sports participation in Qatar. In S. A. Dun, M. Kalaji, & M. Stell, (Eds.), It’s How You Play the Game: International Perspectives on the Study of Sport. Oxford, UK: Inter-Disciplinary Press.

Awards and Honors

  • QNRF UREP annual best projects award finalist for “Catalysts and constraints: Women's and girls' experience of physical activity and sport in Qatar.”
  • Student Government Faculty Appreciation Award, NU-Q.
  • Faculty and Administrator Honor Roll, Associated Student Government Award, Northwestern University.
  • Kappa Delta Sorority Professor of the Month, Northwestern University.