Student Spotlight: Zarrina Gafurova
Zarrina Gafurova, Communications and Media undergraduate student at UCA, was selected for a prestigious fellowship placement at Bellingcat, an independent international collective of researchers, investigators and citizen journalists using open source and social media to investigate a variety of subjects.
She was also invited to attend a threeday training, and learnt about the importance of using open sources, online maps such as Google Earth Pro, Yandex, facial recognition in digital research, Search Engine Operations, among other topics. “I was pleasantly surprised with my entire experience at Bellingcat,” noted Zarrina. “I truly believe that research methodology based on digital research through open sources is revolutionary, and is likely to become a trend in the future. I love the idea that any ordinary reader can verify information online, as it is all based on open sources.”
Zarrina shared how her experience at Bellingcat has complemented her studies at UCA. “We are learning about the importance of credible sources at UCA, and this is also being taught at Bellingcat. It is crucial to double check your sources.”
As part of the fellowship, she is currently conducting research on the “Environmental Impact of Chinese Companies in Central Asian Countries: The Case of Chinese Cement Industry, Huaxin, in Northern Tajikistan.”