This new Handbook provides a comprehensive, state-of-the-art overview of current knowledge and debates on terrorism and counterterrorism, as well as providing a benchmark for future research.

The attacks of 9/11 and the ‘global war on terror’ and its various legacies have dominated international politics in the opening decades of the 21st century. In response to the dramatic rise of terrorism, within the public eye and the academic world, the need for an accessible and comprehensive overview of these controversial issues remains profound. The Routledge Handbook of Terrorism and Counterterrorism seeks to fulfil this need. The volume is divided into two key parts:

  • Part I: Terrorism: This section provides an overview of terrorism, covering the history of terrorism, its causes and characteristics, major tactics and strategies, major trends and critical contemporary issues such as radicalisation and cyber-terrorism. It concludes with a series of detailed case studies, including the IRA, Hamas and Islamic State.
  • Part II: Counterterrorism: This part draws on the main themes and critical issues surrounding counterterrorism. It covers the major strategies and policies, key events and trends and the impact and effectiveness of different approaches. This section also concludes with a series of case studies focused on major counterterrorism campaigns.

This book will be of great interest to all students of terrorism and counterterrorism, political violence, counter-insurgency, criminology, war and conflict studies, security studies and IR more generally.

chapter Chapter 1|10 pages

The study of terrorism and counterterrorism

ByAndrew Silke

part Part 1|1 pages


chapter Chapter 2|9 pages

Defining terrorism

ByAnthony Richards

chapter Chapter 3|12 pages

Conceptualizing and measuring terrorism

ByGary LaFree

chapter Chapter 4|23 pages

A history of terrorism

ByLeonard Weinberg

chapter Chapter 5|9 pages

Root causes of terrorism

ByTore Bjørgo, Andrew Silke

chapter Chapter 6|8 pages

State terrorism

ByAndrew Silke

chapter Chapter 7|13 pages

Nationalist and separatist terrorism

ByJames J.F. Forest

chapter Chapter 8|11 pages

Left-wing terrorism

ByLeena Malkki

chapter Chapter 9|11 pages

Right-wing terrorism

The strategic dimensions
ByGeorge Michael

chapter Chapter 10|13 pages

Lone-actor terrorism

Radicalisation, attack planning and execution
ByNoémie Bouhana, Stefan Malthaner, Bart Schuurman, Lasse Lindekilde, Amy Thornton, Paul Gill

chapter Chapter 11|10 pages

Terrorist psychology and radicalisation

ByZoey Reeve

chapter Chapter 12|14 pages

Children as agents of terrorism and political conflict

ByDeborah Browne

chapter Chapter 13|16 pages

Social media, the online environment and terrorism

ByKatherine E. Brown, Elizabeth Pearson

chapter Chapter 14|9 pages

Terrorist group structures

Balancing security and efficiency
ByJoshua Kilberg

chapter Chapter 15|11 pages

The effectiveness of terrorism

BySarah Marsden

chapter Chapter 16|10 pages

The economic impact of terrorism

ByMikel Buesa, Thomas Baumert

chapter Chapter 17|12 pages

Fundraising, organised crime and financing terrorism

ByJames Windle

chapter Chapter 18|9 pages

Foreign fighters and terrorism

ByDavid Malet

chapter Chapter 19|9 pages

Suicide terrorism

ByAssaf Moghadam

chapter Chapter 20|14 pages

Terrorist hostage-taking

ByMargaret Wilson

chapter Chapter 21|13 pages

Chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) terrorism

ByGary A. Ackerman

chapter Chapter 22|11 pages

Cyber terrorism

ByMarcus Rogers

part Part 1|1 pages

case studies

chapter Chapter 23|11 pages


Formation and evolution
ByDonald Holbrook

chapter Chapter 24|14 pages

Boko Haram

ByJacob Zenn, Zacharias Pieri

chapter Chapter 25|10 pages


BySagit Yehoshua

chapter Chapter 26|13 pages


ByRaphael D. Marcus

chapter Chapter 27|10 pages

Islamic State

ByFrancis Gaffney

chapter Chapter 28|11 pages


ByJohn F. Morrison

chapter Chapter 29|14 pages

Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)

ByAhmed Salah Hashim

chapter Chapter 30|11 pages

Red Army Faction

ByJennifer Schmidt-Petersen

part Part 2|1 pages


chapter Chapter 31|12 pages

Conceptualising counterterrorism

ByRonald Crelinsten

chapter Chapter 32|9 pages

Policing in counterterrorism

ByLindsay Clutterbuck

chapter Chapter 33|11 pages

The military approach to counterterrorism

ByMichael J. Boyle

chapter Chapter 34|11 pages

Intelligence and counterterrorism

ByJulian Richards

chapter Chapter 35|10 pages

Anti-terrorism laws

The United Kingdom’s unfinished history
ByClive Walker

chapter Chapter 36|9 pages

Public support and (counter) terrorism

ByIsabelle Duyvesteyn, Bart Schuurman

chapter Chapter 37|9 pages

Tackling terrorist fundraising and finances

ByMarc Parker

chapter Chapter 38|10 pages

Deterring and preventing terrorism

ByJoshua D. Freilich, Steven M. Chermak, Henda Y. Hsu

chapter Chapter 39|14 pages

Prisons and detention

Reflections on the Northern Ireland experience
ByJacqueline Bates-Gaston

chapter Chapter 40|13 pages

Terrorist disengagement and de-radicalization

ByKurt Braddock

chapter Chapter 41|12 pages

Targeted killings

Perpetual war for perpetual peace?
ByRory Finegan

chapter Chapter 42|10 pages

Ethics and human rights in counterterrorism

ByLyndsey Harris, Rachel Monaghan

part Part 2|1 pages

case studies

chapter Chapter 43|9 pages


A case study in Dirty War
ByItai Sneh

chapter Chapter 44|13 pages


ByStéphane Leman-Langlois

chapter Chapter 45|11 pages


People’s war on terror
ByElena Pokalova

chapter Chapter 46|12 pages


ByFrank Foley

chapter Chapter 47|12 pages

Great Britain

Terrorism and counter-terrorism since 1968
BySteve Hewitt

chapter Chapter 48|11 pages


ByArijit Mazumdar

chapter Chapter 49|11 pages


Terrorism and counter-terrorism in Iraq, 2003–2011
ByMichael Clarke

chapter Chapter 50|11 pages


Can terrorism be curbed?
ByAmi Pedahzur, Lusaura Gutierrez, Arie Perliger

chapter Chapter 51|8 pages


The process of disengaging the Italian left-wing armed groups from political violence
ByLorenzo Bosi, Donatella Della Porta

chapter Chapter 52|11 pages


ByRogelio Alonso

chapter Chapter 53|12 pages


ByCerwyn Moore

chapter Chapter 54|20 pages

The United States of America

Counter-terrorism pre-9/11
ByAaron Winter

chapter Chapter 55|13 pages

The United States of America

Domestic counterterrorism since 9/11
ByJoshua Sinai