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

Jan. News: Researchers identify strongest predictor of post-radicalization violent extremism; New cyber threat mitigation course

Newsletter highlights:


Pre-radicalization criminal activity is strongest predictor of post-radicalization violent extremism

Individuals who engaged in non-violent or violent crime prior to radicalizing were 1.85 times more likely to engage in acts of violent extremism after radicalizing than were extremists without criminal histories, according to new analysis of START’s Profiles of Radicalization in the United States dataset. A new research brief includes an analysis of the likelihood of pre-radicalization criminality for U.S. extremists, a look at the pre-radicalization criminal behaviors that are most prevalent amongst extremists with criminal histories, and information on the average age of earliest criminal activity for non-violent and violent extremists. Read more.


START launches cyber threat mitigation course

START has launched its newest online training course, “Cyber Threats You Face and Ways to Mitigate Them,” a three-hour course to introduce learners to the threat landscape of cyberspace, the cyber threats all people and organizations face, and the best ways to mitigate them. Intended for information technology personnel and the general public, Continuing Education Unit credits are available. Read more.


Did far-right extremist violence really spike in 2017?

START Researchers William Parkin, Joshua Freilich and Steven Chermak wrote this editorial piece about far-right extremism in 2017 based on data from the Extremist Crime Database. Read more.



Images of Death and Dying in ISIS Media: A Comparison of English and Arabic Print Publications

Media, War & Conflict

Winkler, Carol, and Kareem El Damanhoury, Aaron Dicker, Anthony Lemieux


The Intersection of Homicide, Terrorism, and Violent Extremism

Homicide Studies

Lafree, Gary, and Jeff Gruenewald



ICONS launches new simulation on policy responses to terrorism

START’s ICONS team launched its new simulation, “Presidential Commission: Policy Responses to Terrorism,” designed to be used in classrooms across the country. Instructors across disciplines can employ this simulation in their courses to allow students to role play a blue ribbon commission formed in the aftermath of a fictional Washington, D.C. terrorist attack. Read more.
SMA offers opportunity for graduate students to participate in annual conference

Graduate students are invited to submit proposals for posters to be presented during the 11th Annual SMA Conference, organized by the Strategic Multilayer Assessment Office within the Department of Defense and co-sponsored with the Department of Homeland Security, the National Counter Terrorism Center and National Intelligence Council. The 2018 conference theme is, “A Utopian or Dystopian Future, or Merely Muddling Through?” and will incorporate a graduate student poster session in order to introduce up-and-coming scholars to the SMA community and vice-versa. Read more.
Analyzing peace and civil conflict

After receiving START’s Terrorism Research Award as a doctoral student, Aila Matanock began working on her dissertation – a dissertation which Cambridge University Press recently published as a book, “Electing Peace: From Civil Conflict to Political Participation.” Read more.
High school students pilot test new simulation for ICONS

A cohort of students from Calvert High School were given the opportunity to pilot test a new ICONS simulation. Through the simulation the students had to practice interagency collaboration and coordination while learning about the atrocities in Darfur and those responsible. Read more.


START Internship Program Overview and Highlights



Lawfare: Marginalizing violent extremism online

In this editorial Foreign Policy Essay for Lawfare, Audrey Alexander and William Braniff offer ideas about how to marginalize online tools and content that enable radicalization and mobilization.
Mic: Domestic violence is a link among most mass shooters — but America continues to ignore it

START Researcher Clark McCauley is quoted in this article about the history of domestic violence in mass shooters.
The Washington Post: What political science can tell us about mass shootings

START Researcher Erica Chenoweth is quoted in this article about data-based insights into mass shootings.
WTOP: US still faces major terrorism challenges

START Researcher Martha Crenshaw is featured in this radio report about the terrorist threat during the decline of ISIS.
Washington Post: The Iran struggle will be historic. Here’s what Trump should do.

START Researcher Erica Chenoweth is featured in this opinion article about U.S. relations with Iran.
The National Interest: Understanding the Global Refugee Crisis: A Tale of 3 Myths

START Researcher Arie Kruglanski wrote this article about the growing refugee crisis across the world.

This is a selection of news clips from the past month.
A complete list of START’s media coverage can be found 


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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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