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Sadi Shanaah

Sadi Shanaah profile picture

Research Fellow

PhD in Political Science (Aarhus University, 2019); MPhil in Contemporary European Studies (University of Cambridge, Pembroke College, 2008); BA in International and European Economic Studies (SUNY, New Paltz, 2006)


I am a Research Fellow in the project 'Neoliberal Terror: The Radicalisation of Social Policy in EuropeLink opens in a new window' (ERC Starting Grant, PI: Professor Charlotte Heath-KellyLink opens in a new window). In the framework of the project, I examined structural drivers of P/CVE policies (preventing and countering violent extremism) with the help of an P/CVE index that I developed for 38 countries. I also investigated the historical evolution of P/CVE policies and their diffusion. I proposed a theoretical framework for understanding their variation and contestation between and within countries. Currently, I work on several country-level case studies of P/CVE implementation with the focus on their impact upon democratic norms and structures in liberal democratic societies.

My general focus is on conflict, security, and political violence. I am interested in factors, mechanisms, and processes that could lead to or prevent political violence, mostly from the perspective of social psychology and social movement approaches. In particular, I am interested how perceptions of global catastrophic risks and existential threats such as climate change impact political and social public attitudes and behaviour related to conflict and cooperation.

In my doctoral research, I examined the willingness of British Muslims to engage in actions against Islamist extremism and the factors that facilitate or hinder such engagement.

Before joining academia, I have held a number of positions in the public and NGO sectors in the Czech Republic. I was foreign affairs adviser to two cabinet ministers, head of the foreign affairs working group of the Czech Green Party, project coordinator and analyst in a think-tank Glopolis, and regional project coordinator at the Heinrich Böll Foundation. I also founded and managed Insaan, an NGO focused on Czech-Arab cultural dialogue. In the UK, I was a member of the Academic-Practitioner Counter Extremism Network (APCEN) established by the Commission for Countering Extremism (UK) in 2020-2023.

Publications (Peer-Reviewed)

Heath-Kelly, C. & Shanaah, S. (Under contract). The Politics of Preventing Violent Extremism: Liberal Democracy, Civil Society, Radicalisation and Vulnerability. Oxford University Press.

Shanaah, S. (2023). Explaining the variation and contestaiton of P/CVE policies around the world: A public policy approach. Critical Studies on Terrorism, 1-26.

Shanaah, S., Fritsche, I. & Osmundsen, M. (2023). Support for Pro-Climate and Ecofascist Extremism: Correlates and Intersections. Democracy and Security, 1-23.

Shanaah, S. (2023). When democracy is deemed vulnerable: Preventing far-right extremism by curbing Roma “criminality and social pathologies” in the Czech Republic. In C. Heath-Kelly and B. Gruber (Eds.), Vulnerability: Governing the social through security politics. Manchester: Manchester University Press.

Shanaah, S. & Heath-Kelly, C. (2022). What drives counter-extremism? The extent of P/CVE policies in the West and their structural correlates. Terrorism and Political Violence.

Heath-Kelly, C. & Shanaah, S. (2022). Rehabilitation within pre-crime interventions: The hybrid criminology of social crime prevention and countering violent extremism. Theoretical Criminology, 1-21.

Heath-Kelly, C. & Shanaah, S. (2022). The long history of prevention: Social defence, security, and anticipating future crimes in the era of ‘penal welfarism'. Theoretical Criminology, 1-20.

Satherly, N., Yogeeswaran, K., Osborne, D., Shanaah, S. & Sibley, C.G. (2021). Investigating the effects of right-wing terrorism on government satisfaction: A time course analysis of the 2019 Christchurch terror attack. Studies in Conflict & Terrorism, 1-14.

Shanaah, S., Yogeeswaran, K., Greaves, L., Bulbulia, J., Osborne, D., Afzali, U. & Sibley, C.G. (2021). Hate begets warmth? The impact of an anti-Muslim terrorist attack on public attitudes toward Muslims. Terrorism and Political Violence, 1-19.

Shanaah, S. (2021). Anti-Muslim discrimination and support for violent extremism: Evidence from five large-N surveys. Behavioral Sciences of Terrorism and Political Aggression, 1-21.

Shanaah, S. (2020). Demobilizing or activating? The effect of anti-Muslim discrimination on Muslims’ counter-extremism engagement. Social Problems, 1-19.

Shanaah, S. (2019). Alienation or cooperation? British Muslims’ attitudes to and engagement in counter-terrorism and counter-extremism. Terrorism and Political Violence, 1-22.

Shanaah, S. (2019). What motivates Muslims to engage in counterextremism? The role of identity, efficacy, emotions, and morality. Studies in Conflict & Terrorism, 1-21.

Shanaah, S. & Lindekilde, L. (2019). Standing up and speaking out? British Muslims’ collective action against Islamist extremism. Democracy and Security, 1-22.