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I  am Professor of Security Studies at the War Studies Department, and serve as Director of the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation (ICSR, ), which I founded in early 2008.

I have authored or co-authored five books, including Old and New Terrorism,published by Polity Press in 2009; and The Strategy of Terrorism (with MLR Smith), published by Routledge in 2008. I am the author of numerous peer-reviewed articles, dealing with different aspects of terrorism and radicalization, especially ‘homegrown’ radicalization in Western countries.  Shorter articles and opinion pieces have appeared in, among others, the New York Times, Der Spiegel, and the International Herald Tribune (see below). 

 I have taught courses on terrorism, counterterrorism, intelligence, radicalization and counter-radicalization at King's College London and the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University, where I continue to serve as adjunct professor.

I hold an MA in Political Science from the Free University of Berlin, and a PhD in War Studies from King’s College London. Before becoming an academic, I worked as a radio journalist in Germany.

Areas of Interest

My areas of interests cover:

  • Radicalisation and Counter-radicalisation
  • Terrorism and Counterterrorism
  • Insurgency and Counterinsurgency


For a list of most recent publications please visit the Research Portal. 


  • ‘Why Nobody Saw 9/11 Coming’, New York Times, 27 March 2004. Available here
  • ‘Wider Lessons from the IRA: Helping Terrorists Evolve’, International Herald Tribune, 3 August 2005. 
  • ‘Can Terrorists Be Tamed?’, International Herald Tribune, 10 January 2007. Available here
  • ‘A Crisis of Identity and the Appeal of Jihad’, International Herald Tribune, 5 July 2007. Available here
  • ‘Table Tennis for the Taliban’, Der Spiegel, 28 January 2010. Available here (English) and here (German)

Books and Monographs

  • Old and New Terrorism (Cambridge: Polity Press, 2009).
  • ‘Joining Al Qaeda: Jihadist Recruitment in Europe’, Adelphi Paper 399, International Institute for Strategic Studies, January 2009.
  • The Strategy of Terrorism (New York and London: Routledge, 2008) (with M.L.R. Smith).
  • Britain’s Long War: British Strategy in the Northern Ireland Conflict, 1969-98 (Basingstoke and New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2003).
  • IRA: Langer Weg zum Frieden (Hamburg: Europäische Verlagsanstalt, 1999)

Journal Articles

  • ‘Locating Al Qaeda’s Center of Gravity: The Role of Middle Managers’ (with Ryan Evans and Raffaello Pantucci), Studies in Conflict and Terrorism, 34(9) (11).
  • ‘Negotiating with Terrorists’, Foreign Affairs, 86(1) (2007), pp. 128-38.
  • ‘Europe’s Jihadist Challenge’, Survival, 48(2) (2006), pp. 71-84.
  • ‘The Bullet and the Ballot Box: The Case of the IRA’, Journal of Strategic Studies, 28(6) (2005), pp. 1-35.
  • ‘The Strategy of Terrorism: The Framework and Its Fallacies’ (with M.L.R. Smith), Journal of Strategic Studies, 28(4) (2005), pp. 571-95. (Re-printed in Thomas Mahnken and Joseph Maiolo (eds.), Strategic Studies: A Reader (London and New York: Routledge, 2008), Chapter 18.)
  • ‘Missing the Plot? Intelligence and Discourse Failure’ (with M.L.R. Smith), Orbis, 49(1) (2005), pp. 95-107.

Policy Reports

  • Preventing Violent Radicalization in America (Washington DC: Bipartisan Policy Center, 2011). Available here
  • Prisons and Terrorism: Radicalisation and De-radicalisation in 15 Countries (London: ICSR, 2010). Available here
  • Countering Online Radicalisation: A Strategy for Action (London: ICSR, 2009) (with Tim Stevens). Available here
  • Recruitment for the Islamist Militant Movement in Europe (Brussels: European Commission, 2008) (with Brooke Rogers). Available here
  • Securing the Peace: The Normalisation of Security Arrangements in Northern Ireland (Belfast: Independent Monitoring Commission, 2006) (with Ben Bowling and Cian Murphy). Summary available here.


I co-direct the MA program in Terrorism, Security and Society.

I teach the following MA courses:

  • 7SSWM022 Terrorism & Counter Terrorism (co-convenor), 
  • 7SSWM053 Homegrown Radicalisation (convenor)

PhD Supervision

I currently supervise research students within the areas of:

  • Radicalisation and Counter-radicalisation
  • Terrorism and Counterterrorism
  • Insurgency and Counterinsurgency

Expertise & Public Engagement 

I have led research projects and written influential policy reports about issues such as online radicalization, prison-based de-radicalization programs, and terrorist recruitment in Europe. The most recent – “Preventing Violent Radicalization in America” – was published in June 2011 by the Bipartisan Policy Center in Washington DC, where I served as visiting scholar.

I am a member of the editorial boards of two leading, peer-reviewed journals, Studies in Conflict and Terrorism and Democracy and Security, and serve as investigator for the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START) at the University of Maryland. I am an Affiliate of the European Commission's European Network of Experts on Radicalisation, a member of the German Federal Criminal Office's (BKA) European Expert Network on Terrorism Issues, and sit on the advisory boards of numerous other think-tanks and institutions, including the Club de Madrid, the association of former Presidents and Prime Ministers. I have given evidence before committees of the U.S. House of Representatives and the UK House of Commons, and served as an expert witness for the UK’s Crown Prosecution Service.