Biography

Totally globalized Muhammad Cohen was born in New York City, served as a US diplomat in East Africa, masqueraded as a city planner in Queens, and wrote about baseball in the Bronx, Washington and Baltimore before moving to Hong Kong in 1995.

A graduate of Yale and Stanford’s Creative Writing program, Cohen is a blogger for Forbes, editor at large for Inside Asian Gaming, columnist for Asia Times and The Guardian, and formerly a special correspondent for Macau Business magazine. His work on business, politics, media and culture in Asia has appeared also in Time, Columbia Journalism Review, International Herald Tribune, Los Angeles Times, Slate and Salon. His fiction has been published in Asia Literary Review, and the Hong Kong Writers Circle’s Love and Lust collection. He blogs at Muhammad Cohen on media and more. His blog entry, Twenty reasons Barack Obama stinks finished first in reader voting and was selected as a finalist for 3QuarksDaily.com 2010 Prize in Politics.

Hong Kong On Air, a tale of the 1997 handover, television news, betrayal, high finance and cheap lingerie from Blacksmith Books, is Cohen’s first published novel. One reviewer calls Hong Kong On Air “the great American Hong Kong handover novel.” Cohen has given readings in Hong Kong, New York, at the Kuala Lumpur International Literary Festival, and the Ubud Writers & Readers Festival in Bali, where he blogged about his experience for LonelyPlanet.com.

Cohen got his big break in TV news when he called CNN for a job the day bullets began flying in Gulf War I. After rising through the ranks to producer at CNN’s Washington bureau, Cohen moved to Hong Kong for six months to assist the startup of CNBC Asia in 1995; he stayed and became a Hong Kong permanent resident in 2004. In Hong Kong, Cohen has also worked as an editor at Bloomberg News, The Hong Kong Standard and South China Morning Post, and he served as Asia regional communications manager for a US multinational.

Cohen began covering the gambling industry in Asia for Macau Business in 2006. His work frequently challenges accepted industry wisdom and examines issues from unique perspectives. He writes extensively on the post-monopoly growth of Macau, focused on non-gaming initiatives and opportunities. He has covered the development of integrated resorts in Singapore since the start of the bidding process. Cohen also follows Asia’s emerging markets such as the Philippines, Cambodia and South Korea, and potential new markets, such as Thailand. He presented and moderated at the Gaming Industry Executive Summit 2009 and Asia Gaming Congress 2011 n Singapore, and the Asia Gaming and Hospitality Congress 2012 in Macau. In addition, Cohen edited The Poker Face of Wall Street (John Wiley & Sons, 2006) and Red-Blooded Risk: The Secret History of Wall Street (John Wiley & Sons, 2011) for author Aaron Brown, a leading financial risk analyst and poker player.

Cohen has contributed to several Lonely Planet guide books, including the inaugural Lonely Planet Guide to Borneo and the ninth Lonely Planet Guide to Indonesia. Since the late 1980s Cohen has taught writing academically and to working professionals. Combining his experience in the classroom and corporate communications with his multicultural perspective, he developed Writing Clinic, interactive seminars that help writers at every skill level communicate more effectively. He has guest lectured at a number of institutions, including Columbia University, Brooklyn College and UNLV Singapore.

Born Jewish and married to a Muslim princess, Cohen addresses religious and civic groups on “Muhammad Cohen’s Jewish Identity” and is a global advisor to New Foundations for Peace, building bridges between Muhammads and Cohens.

Books


Lonely Planet Indonesia
Lonely Planet Indonesia
Updated guide to the world's most intriguing archipelago

Hong Kong On Air
Hong Kong On Air
Insider view of TV news, love, betrayal, high finance, and cheap lingerie

The Poker Face of Wall Street
The Poker Face of Wall Street
Gambling for investors and investing for gamblers

Lonely Planet Borneo
Lonely Planet Borneo
Muhammad Cohen does Kalimantan and East Sabah