Understanding Political Violence

Insights into Support for Radical Movements

In recent years, my research has centered on three key projects. Firstly, my Marie Skłodowska-Curie post-doctoral scholarship at Wageningen University focuses on "Routinised Insurgent Space," investigating insurgent support patterns in rural and urban areas, with a focus on the PKK in Turkey and the M-19 in Colombia. This work has led to open-access publications and workshops. Secondly, my involvement in the "Lone Actor Radicalisation and Terrorism (LART)" project since 2016 has resulted in a comprehensive dataset on lone actor attacks in Western Europe and North America, with publications in leading journals. Lastly, I'm developing a project, "Protest Politics and Land," examining the link between land and protests, with a recent workshop leading to forthcoming publications. This work builds on previous research in various social movement contexts.

Routinised Insurgent Space (2021-2023)

My most recent project was hosted by the Rural Sociology Group at Wageningen University in the Netherlands. It was a Marie Skłodowska-Curie post-doctoral scholarship financed by the European Commision. Building on the cases of the PKK in Turkey and the M-19 in Colombia, it analysed the spatial patterns of support for insurgent movements, answering questions such as: How does insurgent support vary between rural and urban areas? How do movements obtain support and under what conditions do they lose it? It has led to a number of open access publications on the M-19’s support in Cali and Bogota and a methodological piece on researching the PKK and its archives. I co-organised two workshops focused on the theoretical and empirical questions the project has provoked, in Wageningen in 2022 and "Control in Asymmetric Conflict: Unpacking the Complexities of a Concept" at the Université libre de Bruxelles in 2023. The findings of the latter will be available in a special issue in the Journal Civil Wars. This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No101024078.

Lone Actor Radicalisation & Terrorism (LART)

Since 2016 I have worked on the topic of lone actor radicalisation, initially as a member of the PRIME consortium before continuing with colleagues from the University of Aarhus and the  Hamburg Institute of Social Research. We developed the LART dataset on lone actor attacks, covering western European countries and North AMerican (1990-2022). Our findings have been published in several journals such as Perspectives on Politics, Studies on Conflict and Terrorism and Behavioral Sciences of Terrorism and Political Aggression.

Protest, Radical Politics & Social Movements

An emergent project I am currently developing focuses on the relationship between land and protest, cognisant of the growing strains and tensions related to land usage and the urgent need for environmental sustainability. As a first step a workshop Contentious Politics in Kurdish Studies: Land, Nature, and Infrastructure was held at Wageningen University in September 2023, the findings of which will be published in a forthcoming Special Issue.  This strand of research builds on previous work I conducted on social movements in nationalist mobilisations in Scotland and Catalonia, anti-austerity protest in Europe and trade union militancy in South Africa.


Committed to making a difference

I am not content with merely producing academic content, I am highly motivated to transform my research findings into actionable policy recommendations. I have years of experience in sharing (formally and informally)with a wide range of community and advocacy groups, state bodies and relevant stakeholders. Translating academic results and insights and communicating them beyond the bounds of academia. I have international experience in this regard in Denmark, Colombia and Germany.

These meetings and encounters can be conducted in English, Italian, German and Spanish.

Published Work

Dive into my published works and opinion pieces below
Academic Article
Scattered Attacks: The Collective Dynamics of Lone-Actor Terrorism
Perspectives on Politics

Academic Article
Rebel governance without territorial control: The experiences of the PKK in 1970s Turkey

Academic Article
Clandestinity and insurgent consolidation: The M-19’s rebel governance in urban Colombia
Political Geography

Academic Article
Analysing the PKK’s Rebel Governance: Data Limitations and Some Potential Solutions
The Commentaries

Academic Article
Ciclos de protesta y referéndums por la independencia. Oportunidades cerradas y el camino de la radicalización en Cataluña
Revista Internacional de Sociología

Newspaper Article
An Italian neo-fascist shot 6 immigrants. So why won't Italy's political parties condemn xenophobia?
Washington Post

Academic Article
PKK Violence against Civilians: Beyond the Individual, Understanding Collective Targeting
Terrorism and Political Violence

Academic Article
The M-19’s ideological Sancocho: the reconciliation of socialism and Colombian nationalism
Small Wars & Insurgencies

Opinion Piece
Far-right lone actor terror attack in Hanau: a mirror of contemporary German politics? -
C-REX - Center for Research on Extremism Blog

Policy Brief
Endangered Future: Yezidis in Post-Genocide Iraq and the Need for International Support

Book Chapter
Rebel Governance
The Wiley Blackwell Encyclopedia of Social and Political Movements, 2nd Edition

Academic Article
Peripheral and embedded: relational patterns of lone-actor terrorist radicalization
Dynamics of Asymmetric Conflict

Academic Article
Italy, No Country for Acting Alone? Lone Actor Radicalisation in the Neo-Fascist Milieu
Perspectives on Terrorism

Academic Article
Radicalization patterns and modes of attack planning and preparation among lone-actor terrorists: an exploratory analysis
Behavioral Sciences of Terrorism and Political Aggression

Academic Article
End of the Lone Wolf: The Typology that Should Not Have Been
Studies in Conflict & Terrorism

Book Chapter
Neue Akteure? Der Einzeltäter im Terrorismus
Terrorismus im 21. Jahrhundert: Perspektiven. Kontroversen. Blinde Flecken.