Elaine Monaghan

Professor of Practice

Contact Information

  • Office:
    Franklin Hall
  • Office Hours:
    T/Th 9:30-10:30 a.m. S4 M130B or by appointment
  • Email:
  • Phone:
  • Website:
    The Poynter Center

  • Research and Creative Interests

    Journalism Practice, Foreign Correspondence, Media ethics, Strategic communication, Crisis communication, Representations of Religion, Belarus, Northern Ireland Peace Process, Russia, Scottish Independence Movement, Ukraine,


    Elaine Monaghan is a veteran reporter, writer and foreign correspondent and has worked in strategic communications. 

    Born in Scotland, Elaine is a graduate of Reuters' journalism training program in London, where she was trained in wire reporting, radio and broadcast. Her first posting was to Moscow, where she covered conflict, disasters, elections, financial markets and economic and business news across the former Soviet Union. She then ran Reuters' coverage of Ukraine and of the ascent to power of President Alexander Lukashenko in Belarus. 

    As chief correspondent in Dublin, she led a team of journalists covering Ireland's entry to European monetary union and of Northern Ireland's 1998 peace agreement. From the refugee camps of Albania and Macedonia, and from Kosovo itself, she covered the impact of the Kosovo conflict, working in multimedia teams.

    In 1999, she became State Department correspondent for Reuters, and spent three years traveling with secretaries of state Madeleine Albright and Colin Powell. Later, as Washington correspondent for The Times, she wrote for the British newspaper about the Iraq invasion and other top U.S. stories. 

    She is coauthor of "On the Brink: An Insider's Account of How the White House Compromised American Intelligence," a CIA memoir that was translated into several languages. Elaine blogged for Microsoft UK about the 2008 presidential election campaign and wrote an online column for The Times entitled "Abroad in America.” She served as foreign policy correspondent and as a magazine writer for Congressional Quarterly. She became vice president for a strategic communications firm in Washington DC in early 2013, serving numerous clients, including Amnesty International USA. 

    Elaine arrived in Bloomington in July 2014 with her husband, Lee Feinstein, the founding dean of the School of Global and International Studies, and their amazing children Jack, 14, and Cara, 12. She has a Master's (Hons., First Class) in German and Russian from the University of Glasgow with distinction in spoken German. She also speaks French and Polish. She considers herself incredibly fortunate to be able to pursue her love of journalism and communications in an educational setting.

    Spring 2019

    Elaine is teaching MSCH-J 410, The Media as Ethical and Social Institutions, and working on several grant and curriculum development projects.

    Research, grants, other university affiliations

    Elaine taught an interdisciplinary course that took students from the media school, religious studies and the School of Global and International Studies to Ireland on a reporting trip over spring break last year. Students presented their work, which was also published here, at an April 24-26 symposium she organized called "Representing Religion." The symposium, which featured leading scholars and journalists from IU, the United States, Europe and Africa, was funded by a grant from the American Council of Learned Societies Program in Religion, Journalism & International Affairs.

    Board chair, the Poynter Center for the Study of American Ethics and Institutions

    2016-18: one of three recipients of American Council of Learned Societies' inaugural grants for its Luce/ACLS Program in Religion, Journalism & International Affairs, for project entitled "Perceptions of Religion"

    Recipient, Kemp Development Grant from Media School's journalism unit, to revise core reporting course for graduate students with concentration in journalism or public relations, MSCH-J 505

    Affiliate faculty, Islamic Studies and Russian & East European Institute, both at IU's School of Global & International Studies

    Recent Interviews, Publications 

    Journalists: Solitary Stretcher-bearers or Guiding Lights?

    Interview with documentarian and journalist Ruth O'Reilly on WFIU's "Profiles"

    Interview with Photojournalist Steve Raymer on WFIU's "Profiles"

    Reflections on Noblesville Shooting: Our Schools Shouldn't Be War Zones. The Indianapolis Star

    Do You Want Change? Beware Inertia. News-Decoder

    A Country Called Scotland? A Briton's Identity Crisis. News-Decoder

    Interview with New York Times Columnist Roger Cohen on WFIU's "Profiles"

    Interview with NPR correspondent Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson on WFIU's "Profiles"

    Interviewed by Patrick O'Meara on WFIU's "Profiles"

    "Lookouts on the Watchtower"

    "This is Russia"

    Follow Elaine Monaghan on Twitter @elainemmon.

    Read here about News Decoder, an educational startup where she serves as a correspondent.