Kacper Rekawek

Postdoctoral Fellow
Image of Kacper Rekawek
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Research interests

terrorism, counterterrorism, foreign fighting, conflict, international security


Kacper Rekawek, PhD, is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Center for Research on Extremism (C-REX) at the University of Oslo.

He has more than 15 years of experience in counterterrorism and countering violent extremism from academia (including a PhD at Queen’s University Belfast, QUB, and a research fellowship at the Handa Centre for the Study of Terrorism and Political Violence at the University of St. Andrews), think tanks (including the Polish Institute of International Affairs, PISM, local equivalent to the German SWP) and the third sector (GLOBSEC).

Rekawek’s research interest encompass a vast field related to terrorist organisations and networks, and means of countering them. He originally started as a researcher focusing on terrorism in Europe in general, and the Irish Republican Army, IRA, in particular (his PhD at QUB was a comparative study of the factions of the IRA). Since 2011, in his job as a terrorism analyst at PISM, he focused almost exclusively on global jihadism – that was also the focus of his major projects implemented while he was at GLOBSEC between 2016 and 2019. Since 2014 he has also been studying and published on the Western extremist foreign fighters in Ukraine, and from January 2020 he has been conducting research on the pre-war lives of such fighters which was supported by the Counter Extremism Project.

Rekawek has successfully led multinational research projects related to international security in general and terrorism and countering terrorism in particular (e.g. the comparative analyses of the state of European jihadism, supported by PMI Impact and Counter Extremism Project, which involved partners in 11 countries). He has worked on a number of other international projects, including efforts supported by the European Commission and NATO. He is a member and participates in the activities of the Society for Terrorism Research, European Expert Network on Terrorism Issues and the Radicalisation Awareness Network.

He is the author of two books (including the first comparative study of the factions of the Irish Republican Army, IRA, published by Routledge). Rekawek is also a reviewer for Terrorism and Political Violence, the field’s preeminent journal.

Since completion of his PhD in 2009, Rekawek has appeared on more than 500 occassions as a commentator, expert, analyst etc. in the media. He maintains his associate affiliation with Counter Extremism Project and GLOBSEC. 


Tags: Terrorism, Counterterrorism, Conflict, International Security, Extremism

Selected publications


Research monographs:

  1. Brown-Red Cocktail? Extremist Foreign Fighters in the War in Ukraine, forthcoming (to be published by Routledge in 2022).
  2. Irish Republican Terrorism and Politics: Comparative study of the Official and Provisional IRA, London: Routledge, 2011, series: Political Violence, 196 pages.

Edited volumes:

  1. K. Rekawek (ed.), Not Only Syria?” Foreign Fighters: A Threat to NATO Allies and Its Neighbours, Amsterdam: IOS Press, 2017,
  2. M. Milosevic, K. Rekawek (eds.), Perseverance of Terrorism: Focus on Leaders, Amsterdam: IOS Press, 2014,
  3. K. Rekawek (ed.), Non-military aspects of security in V4 countries – prospects for co-operation, Warsaw: The Polish Institute of International Affairs, 2011.

Popular books:

  1. Człowiek z małą bombą – o terroryzmie i terrorystach [A Man With a Small Bomb: on Terrorism and Terrorists], Warsaw: Czarne, 2017.

Articles in peer reviewed journals:

  1. “Referenced but not Linear? Central-Eastern European Counterterrorism”, East European Politics and Societies, vol. 31, issue 1, 2017, pp. 179-200, 21 pages,
  2. ““The Last of the Mohicans?” The IRA’s “Operation Harvest” in an International Context,” Terrorism and Political Violence,  vol. 28, issue 3, 2016, pp. 435-51, 16 pages, 
  3. The ‘Polite People:’ Pro-Russian Fighters in the Donbass, A Documentary by Kat Argo, 2015, Self-Released,” BitzPol Affairs, vol. 8, no. 1, 2015, pp. 1-9,  9 pages,
  4. “Terrorism and Hybrid Warfare,” Sprawy Miedzynarodowe, Issue, 2015, pp. 57-73, 16 pages, co-authored with Peter Tanchak , [published in Polish as “Nie Tylko dla Orłów? Czy terroryści sięgają po hybrydowość?”], 
  5. “Who is to teach ‘these guys’ to ‘shoot less’?, Journal of Terrorism Research, Volume 5, Issue 1, pp. 78-80, 3 pages, 2014,
  6. "“Their history is a bit like our history”.  Comparative Assessment of the Official and the Provisional IRAs.", Terrorism and Political Violence, vol. 25, issue 5, 2013, 20 pages,
  7. "Badania nad końcem terroryzmu i przywództwem w terroryzmie – obserwacje i refleksje” (Research on how terrorism and terrorism leaders end – observations and reflections), Przegląd Bezpieczeństwa Wewnętrznego, vol. 5, no. 1, 2013, 16 pages,
  8. “From mainstream to minor and back – The Irish Labour Party, 1987-1992”, Irish Political Studies (Special issue on minor parties and independents in Ireland), 2010, equal co-authorship with Shaun McDaid, pp. 625-642, 17 pages,
  9. “The Belfast International Terrorism Workshop – Introduction”, Critical Studies on Terrorism, Vol. 2, No. 2, 2009, co-author with Richard English and Jessie Blackbourn, introduction to a special issue of  refereed journal,
  10. “How Terrorism Ends: The Case of the Official Irish Republican Army”, Critical Studies on Terrorism, Vol. 1, No. 3, 2008, pp. 359-376, 19 pages,
  11. “In the Shadow of the Crescent – the Tatar Minority in Poland”, International Studies – Interdisciplinary Political and Cultural Journal, Vol. 1., nr 1/2003, equal co-autorship with Patrycja Wójcik,
  12. “Media jako źródło zagrożeń podczas imprez masowych na przykładzie wizyty Elżbiety II w Irlandii Północnej w 1977 roku” (Media – the source of threat during mass public events. Case study of Elizabeth II visit to Northern Ireland in 1977), Zeszyty Naukowe WSOWL, Nr 4 (150) 2008, pp. 104-116, 13 pages.

Chapters in edited volumes:

  1. “Terrorism in the Sahel in the Global Context,”, in: T. Koepf, C. Barrios (eds.), Re-mapping the Sahel: transnational security challenges and international responses, Paris: EUISS, 2014, pp. 19-25, 6 pages,
  2. “Followers not providers – why there will not be a new approach on terror in the European Union,” in: J. Ch. Hoste, J. Godin (eds.), Time for a new approach on terror in Africa?, Gent: Academia Press, Egmont, 2014,
  3. “Conducting Field Research on Terrorism in Northern Ireland,” in: A. Dolnik (ed.),  Terrorism Field Research: A Guide, Routledge, 2013, 16 pages,
  4. “Major Breakthrough or ‘Temporary Little Arrangement?’ The Labour Party’s 2011 Electoral Success in Historical Perspective”, co-authored with Shaun McDaid, QUB, in: L. Weeks, A. Clarke (eds.) Radical or Redundant? Minor Parties in Irish Political Life,  (Working Title), Dublin: The History Press  Ireland, 2012, pp. 188-202, 14 pages,  
  5. “The Threat of Terrorism to the Visegrad Group Countries”, in K. Rekawek (ed.), Non-military aspects of security in V4 countries – prospects for co-operation, Warsaw: The Polish Institute of International Affairs, 2011, pp. 26-35, 9 pages, 
  6. “Stickies and Provos: confusion within Irish republicanism 1969-1975”, in O.Coquelin, P. Galliou, T. Robin (ed.), Political Ideology in Ireland: From the Enlightenment to the Present, Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2009, pp. 241-258, 17 pages,
  7. “Przemiana północnoirlandzkich organizacji terrorystycznych w partie polityczne” (Transformation of Northern Irish Terrorism organisations into political movements – case study of the Official Irish republicanism), in M. J. Malinowski, R. Ożarowski, W. Grabowski (red.), Ewolucja terroryzmu na przełomie XX i XXI wieku, Gdański: Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Gdańskiego, 2009,
  8. “Wielka Brytania, jako priorytetowy cel islamistów po 7 lipca 2005” (United Kingom as a Priority Target for Islamists after July 7 2005) in M. Żuber (ed.), Katastrofy naturalne i cywilizacyjne.Zagrożenia cywilizacyjne początku XXI wieku, Wrocław: Wyższa Szkoła Oficerska Wojska Lądowych im. gen. Tadeusza Kościuszki, 2008,
  9. “Global Islamic Terrorist Networks (GITNs) in the UK” in P. Mickiewicz, K. Kubiak (eds.), From Total War to War Against Terrorism, Wrocław: Wydawnictwo Naukowe Dolnośląskiej Szkoły Wyższej Edukacji TWP we Wrocławiu, 2007,
  10. “Globalne sieci islamistyczne (GSI) w Europie Zachodniej w XXI wieku” (Global Islamist Networks in Western Europe in 21st Century), in M. Żuber (ed.), Katastrofy naturalne i cywilizacyjne. Terroryzm współczesny. Aspekty polityczne, społeczne i ekonomiczne, Wrocław: Wyższa Szkoła Oficerska Wojska Lądowych im. gen. Tadeusza Kościuszki 2006.


  1. “Violent Right-Wing Extremism and Terrorism – Transnational Connectivity, Definitions, Incidents, Structures and Countermeasures,” Berlin: Counter Extremism Project (commissioned by the German Federal Foreign Office), to be published on 17 November 2020, co-author,
  2. “Career Break or New Career? Extremist Foreign Fighters in Ukraine,” Berlin: Counter Extremism Project, 2020, https://www.counterextremism.com/sites/default/files/CEP%20Report_Career%20Break%20or%20a%20New%20Career_Extremist%20Foreign%20Fighters%20in%20Ukraine_April%202020.pdf,
  3. European Jihad: Future of the Past? From Criminals to Terrorists and Back? Final Report,” Bratislava: GLOBSEC, 2019, https://www.globsec.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/European-Jihad-Future-of-the-Past-Final-Report.pdf, lead author,
  4. “THE INPUT: PATHWAYS TO JIHAD A Thematic Analysis of 310 Cases,” Bratislava: GLOBSEC, 2019, https://www.globsec.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/The-Input-Pathways-to-Jihad.pdf, lead author,
  5. “Who Are the European Jihadis? Project Midterm Report,” Bratislava: GLOBSEC, 2018, https://www.globsec.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/GLOBSEC_WhoAreTheEuropeanJihadis.pdf, lead author,
  6. „GLOBSEC Intelligence Reform Initiative Report 3: 2018 Counter-Terrorism Update May 2018,” Bratislava: GLOBSEC, 2018, https://www.globsec.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/GLOBSEC-Intelligence-Reform-Initiative-vol.3.pdf, co-author,
  7. “From Criminals to Terrorists and Back? Project Kickoff Report,” GLOBSEC, 2017, https://www.globsec.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/Crime-Crime-Terror-Nexus-update.pdf, lead author,


Published Aug. 9, 2021 2:33 PM - Last modified Nov. 12, 2021 11:49 AM