Sarah Marsden

Senior Lecturer in Radicalisation and Protest in a Digital Age, Lancaster University

Dr Sarah Marsden is Lecturer in Radicalisation and Protest in a Digital Age at Lancaster University, prior to which she was a Lecturer in Terrorism Studies at the University of St Andrews. Sarah has a PhD in International Relations from the University of St Andrews, a Masters in Forensic Psychology, and holds a BA (Hons) in Philosophy and Literature from the University of Liverpool. Her research takes an interdisciplinary approach to questions of collective violence and contentious politics focusing on global jihadism, religious nationalism, and radical social movements. Much of her recent work has concentrated on understanding efforts to reintegrate those with a history of involvement in militancy.

Sarah Marsden’s university profile can be found here.

Recent publications:
Reintegrating Extremists: ‘Deradicalisation’ and Desistance (Palgrave, 2017).
A Social Movement Theory Typology of Militant Organisations: Contextualising Terrorism. Terrorism and Political Violence, 28(2016): 750-773.
Leaderless Global Jihadism: The Paradox of Discriminate Violence. Journal of Strategic Studies, 38 (2015): 579-601. With G. Ramsay.
Conceptualising ‘Success’ with those Convicted of Terrorism Offences: Aims, Methods and Barriers to Reintegration. Behavioral Studies of Terrorism and Political Aggression 7 (2015): 143-165.


More from Sarah…

Evaluating Programmes to Prevent and Counter Extremism

The overwhelming majority of P/CVE programmes have not been subject to formal evaluation. Where evaluations have taken place, they can fall short of the...Read More »

Public Experiences of the UK Counter-Terrorism System

Some communities have disproportionately more contact with the counter-terrorism system. Qualitative studies suggest that British Muslims and Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities...Read More »

Terrorism-Related Simulations

Terrorism-related simulations have been used for a variety of purposes including testing and validating existing plans and procedures; evaluating performance; improving the capabilities and...Read More »

The Relationship Between Mental Health Problems and Terrorism

Prevalence of mental health problems Current research challenges reductive, either-or approaches to the role and significance of mental health disorders in terrorism. Instead, it...Read More »

Behavioural-Focused Protective Security Programmes

Research on the motivations and barriers for public reporting of suspicious behaviours linked to terrorism – broadly defined as anything that appears out of...Read More »

Extremist Risk Assessment

Although there is broad consensus on the risk factors associated with violent extremism, in most cases they have not been properly evaluated. Few studies...Read More »

Economic Influences on Radicalisation

Debate remains in virtually all areas of research about the relationship between economics and radicalisation. Studies assessing the relationship between levels of terrorism and...Read More »

Right-Wing Terrorism: Pathways and Protective Factors

Ideology is not typically a strong motivator in right-wing extremists’ decision to join extremist groups. By contrast, the violence, music and aesthetics associated with...Read More »

Managing Terrorism-Related Offenders in Prison

Problems Identifying prison radicalisation and those driving it is difficult. Dedicated prison intelligence units that liaise with law enforcement and intelligence agencies can support...Read More »

Countering Violent Extremism: A Guide to Good Practice

Since the early 2000s, more than fifty countries have developed initiatives to counter violent extremism (CVE). Despite this, there still remains a lack of...Read More »

Deradicalisation and Counter Violent Extremism

Two guides – an introduction to deradicalisation programmes, and an overview of what good CVE practice should look like – are being published today...Read More »

Countering Violent Extremism II: A Guide to Good Practice

Since the early 2000s, more than fifty countries have developed initiatives to counter violent extremism. Despite this, there still remains a lack of strong...Read More »

Deradicalisation Programmes: Introductory guide

A guide to deradicalisation programmes, which seek to address the ideological, social, and personal issues that lead someone to become involved in violent extremism....Read More »

Reintegrating Extremists: ‘Deradicalisation’ and Desistance

Sarah Marsden writes for us on programmes that seek to help extremists make the transition from violent groups back into society. Highlighting the difficulties...Read More »

From ideological material to targeting choice in leaderless jihadist

Sarah Marsden explores the relationship between ideological material and leaderless jihadist targeting. How do leaderless jihadists decide who to attack? Generally, individuals who carry...Read More »

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