Seminar on British Counter-Insurgency


Sarah Marsden - Conceptualising ‘Success’ With Those Convicted of Terrorism Offences: Aims, Methods, and Barriers to Reintegration

Behavioral Sciences of Terrorism and Political Aggression. [Online first] doi: 10.1080/19434472.2014.1001421


Despite an increasing need to understand the aims of work with ex-prisoners convicted of terrorism offences, the knowledge base remains underdeveloped. Notwithstanding this limited theoretical and empirical foundation, practitioners in probation are increasingly faced with trying to successfully resettle these ex-prisoners. In the south of England, the organisation tasked with this work is London Probation Trust's Central Extremism Unit (CEU). Based on interviews and observational research with practitioners, this article sets out a framework for interpreting this work's aims from a practitioner perspective. Alongside describing the 13 primary aims of successful resettlement, the research sets out what success would ‘look like’, as well as considering some of the challenges in interpreting and promoting positive outcomes. The CEU's model reflects a multimodal approach, speaking to both criminogenic needs, and the primary themes of desistance. Within this, practitioners try to encourage the probationers to take control of their own life and develop an agentic approach to their present and future. It is in this way that successful resettlement is conceptualised by practitioners working in this field. The implications of these findings for current debates over the appropriate focus of work on countering violent extremism and returnees from overseas conflict are also discussed.

To read the full article please visit
Taylor and Francis Online.

Javier Argomaniz - A Decade of EU Counter-Terrorism and Intelligence: A Critical Assessment

Javier Argomaniz latest article has been published online by Intelligence and National Security. It is the centrepiece of a special issue co-edited with Oldrich Bures and Christian Kaunert on the European Union counterterror policies. This work offers a critical evaluation of the EU efforts in this area, its successes, failings and present and future challenges and includes in it contributions from some of the most renown experts on the subject.

The first 50 readers can download this article for free from this link.

You can find more about Javier Argomaniz previous publications here or here.

Bob Lambert - Interview with Le Point: Terrorism: We Must Resist the Temptation of New Legislation

CSTPV’s Dr Bob Lambert was interviewed by Le Point on 13 January 2015.


Robert Lambert, directeur de la Muslim Contact Unit de la police de Londres, ici lors d'une conférence sur l'antiterrorisme au Danemark en 2007. © Keld Navntoft/Scanpix / AFP PHOTO

Terrorisme : "Il faut résister à la tentation d'une législation nouvelle" (Terrorism: We Must Resist the Temptation of New Legislation).

The original article can be read at


Can We Reintegrate Extremists into Society?

CSTPV’s Dr Sarah Marsden has today (15 January 2015) had her blog post “Can We Reintegrate Extremists into Society” published by the Political Studies Association.

“A striking feature of recent jihadist attacks is that most of the perpetrators were well known, both to the security services and to the criminal justice system. Sydney hostage taker, Man Haron Monis was previously on a security watch list and had been charged with numerous offences, both political and non-political. Michael Adebolajo, one of Lee Rigby’s killers, was arrested in Kenya suspected of trying to reach Al Shabaab in Somalia, and was allegedly repeatedly approached by MI5 on his return to the UK. Cherif Kouachi had been in prison for helping to send people to fight with al-Qaeda in Iraq, and he and his brother, Said, were under surveillance until relatively recently.

Inevitably, questions have been asked over whether this knowledge, if handled differently, would have been able to prevent the attacks. Typically, such questions have been directed at the security services. However, as well as asking whether there have been security failures, it is important to ask whether these attacks represent a different missed opportunity: one of resettlement.”

To read the article in full please visit

CSTPV Professorial Fellow Publishes TLS Essay

CSTPV Professorial Fellow Alex Danchev has had his essay - At First Site - published in the Times Literary Supplement (9 January 2015). This essay reviews the Conflict, Time, Photography exhibition which is currently running at the Tate Modern, London.


Read Essay

Donald Holbrook: The Charlie Hebdo attack: a first look at the background and context

CSTPV Senior Fellow Dr Donald Holbrook takes a first look at the 7 January 2015 attack in Paris.

“As the dreadful details of a gun attack on the Paris offices of the satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo continue to emerge, questions are inevitably being asked about what could motivate such ruthless acts of violence. It is much too early to speculate about any of the specifics that led to this attack; indeed at the time of writing the assailants are still at large.

Yet, according to initial reports the attackers appeared to have made references to Islam and to protecting the sanctity of the Prophet Mohammed. The magazine had provoked Islamist anger on several occasions in the past by publishing cartoons depicting the Prophet that many Muslims found offensive. These included the batch of caricatures that initially appeared in the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten in 2005 that provoked widespread fury among Islamists, including the radical Islamist militant fringe.”

The article in full can be read at and was first published in The National newspaper on 8 January 2015

Research Excellence Framework 2014 Results

The University of St Andrews has been ranked top in Scotland and 14th in the United Kingdom for the quality of its research publications across a number of disciplines, according to the results of the 2014 UK Research Excellence Framework published on 18 December 2014.

The REF 2014 – a detailed analysis of the research strengths of all UK universities - has demonstrated that 82% of all research carried out at St Andrews is world-leading or internationally excellent and at least 98% is internationally recognised.

Commenting on the results University Principal and CSTPV Professorial Fellow Professor Louise Richardson said:

“To have come top in Scotland for the quality of our research publications and to have demonstrated wide-reaching international impact from our research in the Sciences and the Arts is a considerable achievement.

REF 2014 confirms that St Andrews, notwithstanding its small size, continues to punch well above its weight at a time of significantly increased competition in the sector. We are immensely proud of our staff and their dedication to producing work of world-leading quality and impact."

Further detailed information on the REF 2014 can be found here.

Carnegie/Caledonian Postgraduate Scholarships - 2015 entry

The Carnegie/Caledonian Postgraduate Scholarships are open to applicants with a First-Class Honours degree from a Scottish university and who are interested in starting a Postgraduate Research degree.

The application process for this scholarship has recently changed, and applicants must now complete an application form and send it to the University Fees & Funding team. The application form requires input from the applicant’s prospective PhD Supervisor, and the form must be completed in full and submitted to us no later than the internal deadline of 12 noon (GMT), Friday 30 January 2015, for the next stage of the selection process. The University as a whole will nominate up to 5 candidates for submission to the Carnegie Trust.

For full details of the scholarship and application process, please visit this webpage.

Javier Argomaniz - Examining Deterrence and Backlash Effects in Counter-Terrorism: The Case of ETA’

(2015) ‘Examining Deterrence and Backlash Effects in Counter-Terrorism: The Case of ETA’ (Terrorism and Political Violence, 27:1, 160–181) (with Vidal-Diez, A.)

Javier Argomaniz latest article has been published by Terrorism and Political Violence. Using statistical modelling techniques, the authors have assessed in this piece the effectiveness of a series of counter-terror initiatives against ETA in the period from 1977 to 2010. The analysis shows that some of the Spanish state's actions in the past have led to a backlash and an upsurge of terrorism violence.

The first 50 readers can download this article for free using this link.

You can find more about Javier Argomaniz previous publications here or here.