A Department of Homeland Security Emeritus Center of Excellence led by the University of Maryland

A consortium of researchers dedicated to improving the understanding of the human causes and consequences of terrorism

February News: Giving Day; Radicalization in the Ranks

 

February News: Giving Day; Radicalization in the Ranks

February 28, 2022

NEWS

START seeks donations on UMD Giving Day 2022
On Wednesday, March 9, START will participate in the University of Maryland’s Giving Day, the annual 24-hour fundraising event in which all members of the UMD community join together to raise critical funding for the university. Donations to START allow us to serve as an objective, transparent and rigorous source of knowledge on important but highly politicized security issues further complicated by current trends of misinformation. Please help us to support our research efforts by sharing with your networks and donating here.  

Inter-American Defense Board uses ICONS platform for disaster response exercise
This month, the Inter-American Defense Board (IADB) conducted a disaster response planning exercise based on its Mechanism for Cooperation in Disasters (MECODE) using the ICONSnet simulation platform run by START’s ICONS Project.

Webinar series launches with public universities in Prince George’s County for Homeland Students
Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (HSEP) has launched a series of webinars with public universities in Prince George’s County. The first two webinars, held in January, featured START researchers and included eighty students and teachers participating.

START researcher appears on panel on violent extremism in Southeast Asia
START Geospatial Research Unit (GRU) Researcher Samuel D. Henkin participated in a RESOLVE Network virtual panel on “Conflict and Violent Extremism in Southeast Asia: Examining Trends in Malaysia and the Philippines,” with the United States Institute of Peace (USIP) this month.

Staff Spotlight: Sharif Ceesay
Sharif Ceesay, recently hired on as START’s Program Coordinator, previously held a position as a finance associate for the Department of Geographical Sciences at the University of Maryland (UMD), and earned his B.A in Economics from UMD in 2018.

START hosts virtual book talk on “Insurgent Terrorism”
In February, Center for Policy Research Director Victor Asal, University of Essex Department of Government Reader Brian J. Phillips and University of Massachusetts Amherst College of Social and Behavioral Sciences (SBS) Dean R. Karl Rethemeyer provided a virtual talk on their new START-Oxford University Press book, “Insurgent Terrorism: Intergroup Relationships and the Killing of Civilians.”

FEATURED PUBLICATION

Radicalization in the Ranks
Jensen, Michael, Elizabeth Yates, and Sheehan Kane

This project expands the Profiles of Individual Radicalization in the United States (PIRUS) database with information on the nexus of criminal extremism and U.S. military service. The expanded database includes 461 individuals with U.S. military backgrounds who committed criminal acts in the United States from 1990 through 2021 that were motivated by their political, economic, social, or religious goals.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES

START Internships
START offers paid internships year round on a variety of research projects and teams. During the course of their internship, participants are exposed to the most up-to-date theories, methods and information related to the study of terrorism. They are versed in the critical questions tackled by homeland security practitioners, policy makers and researchers, and are mentored in a professional environment geared toward student success. The program is designed to prepare the next generation of homeland security scholars and practitioners through real-world research experience. Apply by April 3, 2022 for Summer 2022.

Online Summer Courses
START offers fully online summer and winter courses each year which are open to any current degree seeking student or non-degree seeking individual. Current University of Maryland students may register through Testudo. Non-University of Maryland students must apply as non-degree seeking students, visiting students, or students with Golden ID Cardholder Status through the University of Maryland’s Office of Extended Studies. Topics this summer include analyzing terrorism, terrorist financing and human rights and human security, and classes will run from May 31 – August 19, 2022.

Master of Professional Studies (MPS) degree in Security and Terrorism Studies
Prospective students can now apply for START’s fully online MPS in Security & Terrorism Studies. The program is appropriate for individuals interested in (and/or currently) working in fields related to intelligence analysis, national security analysis, or analysis of other relevant topic areas, and individuals interested in (and/or currently) conducting scholarly research on terrorism and security. Apply by August 5, 2022 for Fall 2022.

EVENTS

Soldiers of End-Times: Assessing the Military Effectiveness of the Islamic State
12 p.m. ET March 3, Online
Washington Institute for Near East Policy Associate Fellow Ido Levy will provide a virtual talk on his book, Soldiers of End-Times: Assessing the Military Effectiveness of the Islamic State.

UMD Giving Day
March 9, Online
Giving Day is a 24-hour fundraising event held on March 9, 2022 for all members of the University of Maryland community. Students, faculty, staff, parents, friends and alumni are invited to join the largest day of giving. The goal is to raise critical funding and engage our community to advance the mission of the University of Maryland.

Virtual Information Session: MPS in Security and Terrorism Studies & Graduate Certificate in Terrorism Analysis (3/15)
6 p.m. ET March 15, Online
START's Master of Professional Studies (MPS) in Security and Terrorism Studies prepares students to examine the complex social, political, economic, and psychological underpinnings of terrorist and security threats, while the Graduate Certificate in Terrorism Analysis provides participants with advanced education on the causes, dynamics and impacts of international and domestic terrorism.

Virtual Information Session: Internship Program (03/16/22)
3 p.m. ET March 16, Online
This info session will be led by START’s Experiential Education Specialist, Eva Coll. The first half of the session will discuss how the internship program currently works, what students or recent graduates have to gain from their experience in the program, application requirements, the projects offered within the center that interns will be working on, followed by Q&A. The second half of the session will include a 30-minute session dedicated to resume and cover letter guidance.

Private Militaries and the Security Industry in Civil Wars: Competition and Market Accountability
12 p.m. ET April 7, Online
START Associate Research Scientist Elizabeth Radziszewski will provide a virtual talk on her book, Private Militaries and the Security Industry in Civil Wars: Competition and Market Accountability. This talk will explore conditions under which private military and security companies could be effectively utilized by governments to help terminate irregular conflicts.

Virtual Information Session: MPS in Security and Terrorism Studies & Graduate Certificate in Terrorism Analysis (4/18)
6 p.m. ET April 18, Online
START's Master of Professional Studies (MPS) in Security and Terrorism Studies prepares students to examine the complex social, political, economic, and psychological underpinnings of terrorist and security threats, while the Graduate Certificate in Terrorism Analysis provides participants with advanced education on the causes, dynamics and impacts of international and domestic terrorism.

Developing Impact and Effectiveness Assessment Tool for Influence Operations
1 p.m. ET April 26, Online
Unconventional Weapons and Technology (UWT) Director Steve Sin and UWT researchers Megan Rutter and Rhyner Washburn will provide a virtual talk on the findings from their project on foreign influence operations.

START IN THE NEWS

Orlando Sentinel: As officials denounce Nazi rallies in Orlando, DeSantis accuses political opponents of 'smear'
START researcher Elizabeth Yates is quoted in this article about neo-Nazi rallies in Florida.

Roll Call: GOP decries cost of Pentagon anti-extremism and diversity training
START director William Braniff is quoted in this article about anti-extremism and diversity training in the military.

The Globe and Mail: Ottawa’s trucker convoy protest inspires right-wing activists in the U.S., Europe and around the globe
START researcher Michael Jensen is quoted in this article about the trucker convoy protests in Canada.

Vice: He Asked a 9/11 Plotter About Flight Lessons. How Long Should He Be Punished?
START researcher Elizabeth Yates is quoted in this article about extremism among veterans.

WTOP: Growth of extremism in US and its connection to disinformation
START researcher Elizabeth Yates is quoted in this radio spot about extremism and disinformation.

New York Times: Who is behind QAnon? Linguistic detectives find fingerprints
This article on QAnon leadership uses recent data on QAnon from START’s Radicalization and Disengagement (RaD) team.

This is a selection of news clips from the past month.

A complete list of START’s media coverage can be found here.

SUPPORTING START

Help Support START Research and Education
The START Consortium is dedicated to generating knowledge of the human causes and consequences of terrorism. Applying rigorous standards to both research and education, START seeks to illuminate one of the most highly politicized and understudied phenomena in the social sciences for students, practitioners and policy-makers. Funded primarily through research grants to date, START is seeking to generate an endowment that will provide the flexibility and autonomy to ensure that it can continue to serve as an objective source of data and empirically based analysis into the future. To donate, or for more information, please click here.

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