VOX-Pol Newsletter 1(1) May 2014

Dear Reader,

Welcome to the first issue of the VOX-Pol Newsletter!

We are delighted to present the first issue of the VOX-Pol Newsletter which will be issued every quarter to keep you up to date with developments in and the activities of the VOX-Pol Network of Excellence (NoE).

The VOX-Pol NoE is a European Union Framework Programme 7 funded academic research network focused on researching the prevalence, contours, functions, and impacts of Violent Online Political Extremism and responses to it.  It is a five-year programme which commenced on 1 January 2014.

We hope you enjoy reading the Newsletter and welcome any feedback you may have.

If you have colleagues or friends who may be interested in the content of this newsletter, please forward it to them and encourage them to subscribe via our website.

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Yours sincerely,
The VOX-Pol Team


*Call For Papers* VOX-Pol Launch Conference: Setting the Research Agenda, 28 – 29 August 2014, King’s College London

Call for Papers: Deadline for submission of abstracts is 16 May 2014.


VOX-POL Summer School, 30 June – 4 July 2014, Dublin City University

Eliot Higgins a.k.a @BrownMoses will deliver a Public Lecture!



  • Creation and development of long-term relationships between established national research groups and new researchers and research groups;
  • Creation of a sustainable critical mass of innovative research activity amongst what is currently a growing, but fragmented group of researchers and research topics;
  • Harnessing and refinement of software tools generally employed in other domains to collect and analyse Violent Online Political Extremism content;
  • Provision of training in tools, methods, and substantive issues relating to Violent Online Political Extremism to other researchers, including PhD students and early career researchers, and those professionally tasked with monitoring and/or responding to Violent Online Political Extremism, via conferences, summer schools, and workshops;
  • Raised awareness of the challenges of research and decision-making in this area by exploring the interplay of e-research ethics, privacy, surveillance, freedom of speech, and practices of and responses to Violent Online Political Extremism;
  • Outreach to diverse publics, via contributions to mass media, public lectures and other public events, free-to-access publications, etc., describing our research and its purposes;
  • Influencing research agendas on the European and world stages in key aspects of Violent Online Political Extremism;
  • Ensuring that EU and member states’ strategies and policies targeting Violent Online Political Extremism are based on concrete evidence, experience, and knowledge about the contour and workings of Violent Online Political Extremism, and not untested assumptions, thus increasing such strategies and policies likelihood of success.


VOX-Pol Kick-Off Meeting, 18 – 19 February 2014, Dublin City University

The official VOX-Pol Kick-Off Meeting was held on 18-19 February 2014 at Dublin City University.  Attendees included colleagues from a majority of VOX-Pol partner institutions including, in addition to DCU, Central European University, the Institute for Peace Research and Security Policy (Hamburg), King’s College London, the Oxford Internet Institute, TNO, and the University of Amsterdam; VOX-Pol’s EU Project Officer; Academic Advisory Board members Dr. Brigitte Nacos, Prof. Alex Schmid, and Prof. Gabriel Weimann; and Ethics Advisory Board members Prof. Elizabeth Buchanan and Prof. Charles Ess.

Round Table Discussion on Terrorism in Old and New Media, 18 February 2014, Dublin City University

The School of Law and Government at Dublin City University hosted, in conjunction with VOX-Pol, a roundtable discussion on ‘Terrorism in Old and New Media.’

Contributors to the roundtable were Dr. Maura Conway (Dublin City University), Dr. Brigitte Nacos (Columbia University), Prof. Alex Schmid (International Centre for Counterterrorism-The Hague), Prof. Gabriel Weimann (Woodrow Wilson Centre).

The event, chaired by Mr. James Fitzgerald, was enjoyed by a large audience of undergraduate, MA, and PhD students, and colleagues.


International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation

The International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation at King’s College London has just released a ground-breaking report on the use of social media by Western ‘foreign fighters’ joining jihadist groups in Syria.

The report has received widespread media coverage all over Europe and the US, including Sky NewsThe Guardian, and NBC NewsMORE INFORMATION

Also see VOX-Pol Advisory Board member Prof. Philip Seib‘s (University of Southern California) blog post ‘Social Media Are Undervalued in Counterterrorism‘.

Dublin City University

MIT Tech Review reviewed the paper ‘Online Social Media in the Syria Conflict: Encompassing the Extremes and the In-Betweens‘ jointly authored by VOX-Pol computer science and social science colleagues. MORE INFORMATION

Lisa McInerney appeared in the Irish national broadcaster’s flagship current affairs programme RTE Prime Time special documentary on Colleen LaRose (aka “Jihad Jane”), which explored LaRose’s online (and offline) activity in relation to the plot to kill Swedish cartoonist Lars Vilks. MORE INFORMATION

IIIT Delhi

TweetCred is a  Chrome browser extension that rates the credibility of tweets developed in conjunction with our partner IIIT Delhi and reported upon in The Washington Post article ‘Lies are everywhere on the Internet. But this free tool could potentially fight them‘. MORE INFORMATION

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