Welcome to VOX-Pol’s online Library, a research and teaching resource, which collects in one place a large volume of publications related to various aspects of violent online political extremism.

Our searchable database contains material in a variety of different formats including downloadable PDFs, videos, and audio files comprising e-books, book chapters, journal articles, research reports, policy documents and reports, and theses.

All open access material collected in the Library is easy to download. Where the publications are only accessible through subscription, the Library will take you to the publisher’s page from where you can access the material.

We will continue to add more material as it becomes available with the aim of making it the most comprehensive online Library in this field.

If you have any material you think belongs in the Library—whether your own or another authors—please contact us at and we will consider adding it to the Library. It is also our aim to make the Library a truly inclusive multilingual facility and we thus welcome contributions in all languages.


Full Listing

The Stream: Are the Roots of Radicalisation Online?
2014 Al Jazeera Video
A New Approach to Counter Radicalization
2014 US Council on Foreign Relations Video
US Council on Foreign Relations panel discussion on approaches to countering radicalisation. Panel members include Peter Neumann of the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation, a VOX-Pol partner. Originally recorded on 18 May 2011 and uploaded by the Council on Foreign Relations on April 1, 2011
King's College London Online Radicalisation
2014 Neumann, P. and Stevens, T. Video
Dr Peter Neumann and Tim Stevens of VOX-Pol partner, the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation and Political Violence at Kings College London, discuss the role of cyberspace in terrorism and insurgency. They ask if policies such as internet censorship are effective measure to counteract online radicalisation. Originally uploaded by ICSR on 12 February 2010
The Power of Online Radicalization with Peter Neumann, part 1
2014 Neumann, P. Video
An Interview with Peter Neumann by David H. Schanzer, Associate Professor of the Practice for Public Policy and Director, Triangle Center of Terrorism and Homeland Security. Originally uploaded by D Schanzer on 31 January 2014 (Part 1)
'Waging War on the Ideological Battleground' Dr Anne Aly YouTube
2014 Aly, A. Lecture
Paper presented at Swansea University 2014: Terrorists' Use of the Internet (5th-6th June 2014) by Dr Anne Aly of Curtin University. Dr Daly's paper focuses on terroristic narratives and counter narratives online.
Web as Weapon Internet as a Tool for Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism (Part 1 of 2)
2014 Hoffman, B. Video
Web as Weapon: Internet as a Tool for Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism (Part 1 of 2) Committee on Homeland Security, Subcommittee on Intelligence, Information Sharing, and Terrorism Risk Assessment. WITNESSES: Dr. Bruce Hoffman, Professor, Georgetown University; Ms. Rita Katz, Director, SITE Institute; Ms. Parry Aftab, Internet Attorney; Mr. Mark Weitzman, Director, Task Force Against Hate, Simon Wiesenthal Center. Video provided by U.S. House of Representatives. Discussion held on 071106. Originally uploaded by House.Resource.Org on 14 November 2011
Web as Weapon Internet as a Tool for Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism ( Part 2 of 2 )
2014 Hoffman, B. Video
Web as Weapon: Internet as a Tool for Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism (Part 2 of 2) Committee on Homeland Security, Subcommittee on Intelligence, Information Sharing, and Terrorism Risk Assessment. WITNESSES: Dr. Bruce Hoffman, Professor, Georgetown University; Ms. Rita Katz, Director, SITE Institute; Ms. Parry Aftab, Internet Attorney; Mr. Mark Weitzman, Director, Task Force Against Hate, Simon Wiesenthal Center. Video provided by U.S. House of Representatives. Discussion held on 071106. Originally uploaded by House.Resource.Org on 14 November 2011
'Weighing the Role of the Internet in Past, Present, and Future Terrorism' Dr Maura Conway
2014 Conway, M. Lecture
VOX-Pol Coordinator Dr Maura Conway discussing the role of the Internet in the past, the present & the future of terrorism, at the 2014 Symposium of Cyber Terrorism Project at Swansea University.
Jihad, Syria, and Social Media; How Foreign Fighters Have Documented Their War
2014 Channel 4 Video
BBC Radio Scotland Morning Show 05 09 14 YouTube
2014 Havlicek, S. Audio
Sasha Havlicek of the Institute for Strategic Dialogue interviewed on BBC Radio Scotland morning show on 5 September 2014 to discuss [internet] radicalisation of women in the UK. Originally published on 10 September 2014 by BBC Radio Scotland
The Hidden Face of Jihadist Internet Forum Management: The Case of Ansar Al Mujahideen
2014 Torres-Soriano, M.R. Journal
This article offers a descriptive analysis of the private interactions which took place on the jihadist Internet forum known as Ansar Al Mujahideen between 2008 and 2010. The analysis of the non-visible part of the forum contributes to a more robust underpinning of some current assumptions regarding the jihadist Internet infrastructure and its hierarchical dependence on, and subordination to, formal terrorist organisations and charismatic leaders. In addition, it offers a new perspective on
other aspects such as the many conflicts and rivalries between the different forums, the operational constraints caused by the lack of human and material resources, and the considerable vulnerability of the forums to cyber-sabotage and infiltration attempts.
Live-Tweeting Terror: A Rhetorical Analysis of @HSMPress_ Twitter Updates During the 2013 Nairobi Hostage Crisis
2014 Sullivan, R. Journal
With the advent of social media, terrorist organisations have seized an unprecedented opportunity to engage wider audiences with their ideologies and actions. This study aims to develop an understanding of this tactic by analysing its use in the 2013 Westgate Mall hostage crisis. During that event, the Twitter account @HSMPress_ provided continuous updates supporting the actions of the terrorist organisation Al- Shabaab. Situating the event within a framework of Jürgen Habermas’s theories of the Public Sphere and Andrew Mack’s theories of asymmetric warfare, this paper employs Kenneth Burke’s dramatistic pentad to perform a rhetorical analysis of the tweets using both artistic and inartistic factors. It does so in order to understand how they engaged the audience of the terrorist event, emphasising the performative nature of the text in accordance with behaviourist objectives. The results of this analysis will demonstrate how terrorist groups may use platforms like Twitter to achieve a strategic political goal by shifting viewer perspectives, with significant implications for future policy governing social media content and censorship.
Islamophobia and Twitter: A Typology of Online Hate Against Muslims on Social Media
2014 Awan, I. Journal
The Woolwich attack in May 2013 has led to a spate of hate crimes committed against Muslim communities in the United Kingdom. These incidents include Muslim women being targeted for wearing the headscarf and mosques being vandalized. While street level Islamophobia remains an important area of investigation, an equally disturbing picture is emerging with the rise in online anti-Muslim abuse. This article argues that online Islamophobia must be given the same level of attention as street level Islamophobia. It examines 500 tweets from 100 different Twitter users to examine how Muslims are being viewed and targeted by perpetrators of online abuse via the Twitter search engine, and offers a typology of offender characteristics.
'The Call to Jihad The Role of Internet Preachers' Angela Gendron YouTube 360p
2014 Gendron, A. Lecture
Angela Gendron of Carleton University at 'Swansea University's Symposium 2014: Terrorists' Use of the Internet' speaks on radicalisation and the role of internet preachers. Originally published on July 4, 2014 by CTProject
Sasha Havlicek Interviewed by BBC News on Internet Radicalisation and Effective Counter Narratives
2014 Havlicek, S. Video
Sasha Havlicek of the Institute for Strategic Dialogue interviewed by BBC News in July 2014 on the topic of internet radicalisation and effective counter-narratives. Originally published by the BBC on 1 July 2014
Technological Skills of White Supremacists in an Online Forum: A Qualitative Examination
2014 Holt, T.J. and Bolden, M.S. Journal
Research surrounding radicalization to and use of violence among extremist and terror groups has expanded over the last decade. There are still fundamental questions that must be addressed, particularly regarding the role of the Internet in radicalisation and recruitment as well as general technological skill within extremist groups. Few studies have considered this issue, especially among Far Right groups which have been identified as one of the top threats to public safety within the United States. This exploratory study addresses these issues using a qualitative analysis of a sample of threads from a technology-specific subforum of a widely used web forum in the white nationalist and white power movement. The findings demonstrate that the process of information sharing is distinct from that of more sophisticated deviant and criminal communities on-line, as users readily answer basic technological questions rather than discuss offensive attack techniques. The implications of this study for future research are examined in depth.
Why the Internet is Not Increasing Terrorism
2014 Benson, D.C. Journal
Policymakers and scholars fear that the Internet has increased the ability of transnational terrorists, like al Qaeda, to attack targets in the West, even in the face of increased policing and military efforts. Although access to the Internet has increased across the globe, there has been no corresponding increase in completed transnational terrorist attacks. This analysis examines the causal logics—which have led to the conventional wisdom—and demonstrates both theoretically and empirically that the Internet is not a force multiplier for transnational terrorist organizations. Far from being at a disadvantage on the Internet, state security organs actually gain at least as much utility from the Internet as terrorist groups do, meaning that at worst the Internet leaves the state in the same position vis-a`-vis terrorist campaigns as it was prior to the Internet.
Voices of the ‘Caucasus Emirate’: Mapping and Analyzing North Caucasus Insurgency Websites
2014 Campana, A. and Ducol, B. Journal
This article looks at Internet use by insurgent groups in the North Caucasus in the context of a regional diffusion of violence. Using a mixed methods research design that combines hyperlink network analysis and micro-discourse analysis, it examines the online characteristics of the Caucasus Emirate and the main frames conveyed by the websites affiliated with the Emirate. It demonstrates the existence of a network of cross-referencing websites that, collectively, articulate the Emirate’s political agenda online and allow for the dissemination of frames across the Web. It also shows that while jihadism provides a cultural resource that fosters a global sense of community, the jihadization of discourse does not eradicate local references as the local dynamics of the conflict have a strong impact on online communicative strategies. Finally, although based on a specific case study, this article highlights the potential of a mixed methods research design as applied to an analysis of virtual insurgent networks.
Ethical Dilemmas in Qualitative Research with Youth On/Offline
2014 Livingstone, S and Locatelli, E. Article
Research on the digital and online environment poses several ethical questions that are new or, at least, newly pressing, especially in relation to youth. Established ethical practices require that research have integrity, quality, transparency, and impartiality. They also stipulate that risks to the researcher, institution, data, and participants should be anticipated and addressed. But difficulties arise when applying these to an environment in which the online and offline intersect in shifting ways. This paper discusses some real-life “digital dilemmas” to identify the emerging consensus among researchers. We note the 2012 guidelines by the Association of Internet Researchers, which advocates for ethical pluralism, for minimizing harm, and for the responsibility of the researcher where codes are insufficient.
As a point of contrast, we evaluate Markham’s (2012) radical argument for data fabrication
as and ethical practice. In reflecting on how researchers of the digital media practices of youth resolve their dilemmas in practice, we take up Markham’s challenge of identifying evolving practice, including researchers’ workarounds, but we eschew her solution of fabrication. Instead, we support the emerging consensus that while rich data are increasingly available for collection, they should not always be fully used or even retained in order to protect human subjects in a digital world in which future possible uses of data exceed the control of the researcher who collected them.
Report of the Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance, Mutuma Ruteere
2014 United Nations Human Rights Council Policy
The unprecedented, rapid development of new communication and information technologies, such as the Internet and social media, has enabled wider dissemination of racist and xenophobic content that incites racial hatred and violence. In response, States, international and regional organizations, civil society and the private sector have undertaken a variety of legal and policy initiatives. In the present report, the Special Rapporteur examines the context, key trends and the manifestations of racism on the Internet and social media, and provides an overview of the legal and policy frameworks and the measures taken at international, regional and national levels, as well as some of the regulatory norms adopted by Internet and social network providers. He presents examples of measures taken to respond to the use of the Internet and social media to propagate racism, hatred, xenophobia and related intolerance, while highlighting the overall positive contribution of the Internet and social media as an effective tool for combating racism, discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance.