Joe Whittaker

Joe Whittaker
Swansea University | SWAN · Department of Criminology

Politics and Philosophy BA (Hons), International Politics (Middle East Studies) MA

About

13
Publications
1,786
Reads
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64
Citations
Citations since 2016
13 Research Items
64 Citations
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Additional affiliations
May 2017 - present
International Centre for Counter-Terrorism
Position
  • Research Associate
January 2017 - present
Swansea University
Position
  • Graduate Teaching Assistant
Description
  • Led a number of undergraduate seminars and delivered guest lectures on terrorism, terrorists' use of the Internet, and countering violent extremism.

Publications

Publications (13)
Article
Full-text available
This study explores how terrorists use financial technologies in their plots. Using a database of 231 US-based Islamic State actors, it anal- yses how they move money and make purchases, as well as whether the use of technology affects success. Fundamentally, terrorists opt for simplicity; there is little evidence of sophisticated financial plots....
Article
Full-text available
This article seeks to re-ontologize online radicalization. Individuals becoming terrorists after being exposed to online content have become a prescient concern for academics, policy makers, and journalists. Existing theoretical contributions to the concept have assumed that there are two ontological domains-online and offline-that can be meaningfu...
Article
Full-text available
Introduction This paper reviews the existing empirical studies on the role of social media recommendation algorithms and potential links to extremist content. It seeks to provide transparency for future researchers by taking stock of the present empirical knowledge base, noting the types of data and methods that are utilized and charting gaps in th...
Article
Online radicalisation to terrorism has become a pervasive policy concern over the last decade. However, as a concept it lacks clarity and empirical support. In this article, we add an empirical and theoretical lens to this problem by analysing the trajectories of 231 Islamic State terrorists. We use cluster analyses to create typologies of individu...
Article
Full-text available
Policymakers have recently expressed concerns over the role of recommendation algorithms and their role in forming “filter bubbles”. This is a particularly prescient concern in the context of extremist content online; these algorithms may promote extremist content at the expense of more moderate voices. In this article, we make two contributions to...
Article
Although the production of videogames by extremist and terrorist groups has markedly declined since a high point in the 2000s, game-based interventions remain highly significant, whether through the adoption of gaming-based iconography in extremist and terrorist social media campaigns or through the activity of modders and groups’ supporters who co...
Article
Research Summary This study offers an empirical insight into terrorists’ use of the Internet. Although criminology has previously been quiet on this topic, behavior‐based studies can aid in understanding the interactions between terrorists and their environments. Using a database of 231 US‐based Islamic State terrorists, four important findings are...
Article
Full-text available
Strategic communications for the purpose of countering violent extremism have become widespread in recent years, especially given the communications revolution which has amplified the messages of violent extremists and those that wish to counter them. Despite this, there is little-to-no research which collects message data and analyses its design i...
Chapter
National governments and international governmental organisations have identified online radicalisation as one of today’s most pressing security challenges. It is thus unsurprising that there is a burgeoning literature on the topic. Within this literature, use of the terms “radicalisation”, “self-radicalisation”, “online radicalisation” and “echo c...
Chapter
Full-text available
It is often argued that a limitation to studying and challenging violent extremism (VE) is a lack of data-extremists are a difficult research population to engage in primary research. However, proponents of this argument miss the wealth of rich, secondary data available. This chapter offers a reflective analysis of creating a database of violent ex...
Chapter
National governments and international governmental organisations have identified online radicalisation as one of today’s most pressing security challenges. It is thus unsurprising that there is a burgeoning literature on the topic. Within this literature, use of the terms “radicalisation”, “self-radicalisation”, “online radicalisation” and “echo c...
Chapter
The topic of online radicalization is ubiquitous within common discourse around terrorism and extremism. However, there is a distinct lack of empirical research which focuses on how the Internet affects this process. The prevailing wisdom among academics is that despite the large digital footprint in modern cases of terrorism and extremism, the Int...
Technical Report
Full-text available
This study, commissioned by the European Parliament's Policy Department for Citizens' Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the LIBE Committee, provides an overview of current approaches to countering terrorist narratives. The first and second sections outline the different responses developed at the global and European Union levels....

Network

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Projects

Project (1)
Project
This project will examine why some individuals are resilient to radicalization despite political persecution, imprisonment, torture and forced migration. Specifically, it will focus on individuals who were labeled ‘terrorists’ for their alleged involvement or support for a coup attempt that took place in Turkey on July 15, 2016, yet who have shown no sign of violent radicalization since. In the terrorism literature, the primary focus of much research is placed on radicalization, deradicalization (and/or disengagement) and rehabilitation, yet there is currently no study of non-radicalization. This research will thus inform the terrorism literature on resilience by introducing the concept of non-radicalization and shedding light on the factors involved. Also in practical terms, the findings of this research may inform countries’ policies of “protective factors” that may aid future efforts and interventions in countering violent extremism (CVE).