Welcome to Volume 8 Issue 2 of the VOX-Pol Newsletter.
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The VOX-Pol Team
VOX-Pol OPEN ACCESS PUBLICATION
The article, Online Extremism and Terrorism Research Ethics: Researcher Safety, Informed Consent, and the Need for Tailored Guidelines, by Maura Conway, VOX-Pol Coordinator, is now open access and can be read in full for free. It is part of the March 2021 Ethics and Terrorism special issue of the journal Terrorism and Political Violence.
The article reflects on two core issues that occur as human subjects’ research ethics play out for extremism and terrorism researchers in the Internet age: researcher safety and potential harms to research subjects. Two primary recommendations:
- The article calls for an increase in literature addressing the ethics issues raised in the conduct of ‘real world’ research on violent extremism and terrorism, which includes decisions and decision-making processes, and which engages with Internet Studies and extant work on practical Internet research ethics.
- The author favours the development and deployment of sub-discipline- and analysis-specific guidelines.
An in-depth VOX-Pol Report on this topic is coming soon, which will additionally cover the historical background to the development of research ethics governance systems; the pros and cons of the currently available guidelines for engaging in ethically-informed online research; and the literature produced to date on the ethics issues, challenges, and dilemmas facing online extremism and terrorism researchers.
You can read the open access article in full HERE.
Terrorism and Social Media (TASM) Virtual Conference is taking place from 21 to 25 June 2021. #TASMConf 2021 will feature 30 leading international experts on nine thematic panels spread over five days. VOX-Pol Fellows and Researchers will be presenting on themes such as online radicalisation, resilience, P/CVE, content moderation, and the impact of Covid19. Register for free HERE.
RECENT VOX-Pol EVENTS
In March 2021, VOX-Pol published four Blog posts on the topic of ‘Terrorism Informatics’. The series covers A Framework for Researchers, Identifying Extremist Networks, Analysing Extremist Content, and Predicting Extremist Behaviour. The Blogs are written by Matti Pohjonen, a Researcher for a Finnish Academy-funded project on Digital Media Platforms and Social Accountability (MAPS) and VOX-Pol Fellow.
Following the four Blog posts, VOX-Pol hosted a Webinar, where blog author Matti Pohjonen and Eugenia Siapera, UCD Professor of Information and Communication Studies, discussed the topic of ‘Terrorism Informatics’ and how researchers can ethically engage in these kinds of analyses.
IN THE MEDIA
News by and featuring VOX-Pol fellows and researchers.
- Facebook’s Trump Ban Has Been a Limited Success, The Atlantic, 6 May 2021.
- The Venture Capitalists of Terrorism, World Politics Review, 6 May 2021.
- Do Researchers Have an Obligation to Report Dangerous Actors?, GNET, 23 April 2021.
- Tech CEOs Face Congressional Grilling, Foreign Policy, 25 March 2021.
- Rethinking the Role of Police, CBC, 26 February 2021.