Research

I am a lecturer at the University of Portsmouth, focusing on politics and security in Russia and Eurasia, terrorism and political violence, and social movements.

My research examines the evolution of the insurgency that has operated in Russia’s North Caucasus, as well as the involvement of ‘Russian-speaking’ fighters in the conflict in Syria and Iraq. This work explores questions about the role of ideology, insurgent leadership, and the patterns and limitations of violence. My doctoral research, completed in March 2019 at the University of Birmingham, sought to explain ideological variance and change across the geography and life cycle of the movement known as the Caucasus Emirate (Imarat Kavkaz, IK). My thesis is entitled ‘Interpreting the Ideological Evolution Of An Insurgency: Lessons From The North Caucasus, 2007-2015’ and is accessible here.

I am a fluent in Russian and have intermediate German and Turkish language skills. My areas of expertise include:

  • Russian and Eurasian domestic and foreign policy
  • Political violence and terrorism
  • Radicalisation, deradicalisation, and disengagement
  • Social movements
  • Ideology and political beliefs
  • Leadership
  • International politics and security
  • Qualitative research methodologies, including field research