Concordia University

http://www.concordia.ca/content/concordia/en/research/migs/about/digital-fellows-network.html

Digital Fellows Network

The Digital Fellows Network brings together leading experts, academics, diplomats, government officials, journalists and civil society leaders from the US and Canada to cooperatively formulate strategies on countering violent extremism online.  This Network is part of the North American Working Group to Counter Violent Extremism Online established by MIGS in November 2016 with the generous support of the office of public affairs of the US Embassy to Canada 

20160713_215439
Marc-André Argentino

Marc-André Argentino is a PhD student in the Department of Religion, at Concordia University.  His research focus is on the intersection of religion and social media, as well as how they are used by non-state actors in the creation of propaganda, recruitment of members to extremist causes and instill fear. Aspects of his research are used in the construction of CVE programs that use social media and education to achieve their goals. In association with MIGS he is the founder of the COUNTRA project, which aims to combat the root causes of extremism and radicalization. CONTRA works through both the media and the classroom in order to teach youths and communities to better understand the complex political world that surrounds them. By providing hands-on training on issues such as xenophobia, Islamophobia, and mediatization, CONTRA hopes to encourage students to think critically about current events, thus promoting an inclusive and welcoming environment to all people.

Twitter: @marc1309


stephane_berthomet
Stéphane Berthomet

Berthomet is a specialist on police issues, terrorism and radicalisation. In France, he worked for the National Police, including the Division Nationale Anti—Terroriste (DNAT - aka. national anti-terrorist division) and the Direction de la Surveillance du territoire (DST- aka. directorate of territorial security), Unités d’enquêtes Judiciaires (judicial investigation unit). He then worked for the General Secretariat of the Council of the European Union (GSC) - Justice and Home Affairs Council configuration (JHA). Berthomet has written several books, including "La fabrique du djihad: radicalisation et terrorisme au Canada" (Edito, 2015).  He is the co-founder of the Observatoire sur la radicalisation et l'extrémisme violent (OSR). He is affiliated with several research centres and regularly appears in the media as an analyst

Twitter: @StephBerthomet

http://stephaneberthomet.ca/

 

SLB
Sydney Black

Sydney Black is an Associate at The Soufan Group, focusing on countering violent extremism and cybersecurity efforts. She previously served as the Special Assistant to the Director for the Cook County Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management. In that capacity, she managed the Countering Targeted Violence Against our Communities initiative, a community engagement and training program that addresses targeted violence. Previously, Sydney worked as a Program Administrator for Cardinal Point Strategies, assisting in the development and delivery of the Leading Through Crisis, an intensive crisis management training program for elected officials in Cook County. She also served as a Research Analyst for iMapData, a geospatial risk mitigation and intelligence company. In this capacity, she helped to develop data layers that plotted international terrorist events back to 2000, identified critical infrastructure for the upcoming Olympics in Rio, and produced risk analyses for executive clientele and high-value individuals traveling throughout the U.S., Europe, and Africa. Sydney received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and International Security from Northwestern University.


Andre Gagne_photo_2
André Gagné 

André Gagné is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Arts (Department of Theological Studies) at Concordia University. He specializes in questions related to religious violence (Jewish, Christian and Islamist), radicalization, and the use sacred texts and traditions by extremist groups and individuals. He is regularly consulted by the media and invited to lecture on global terrorism, countering violent extremism, and the prevention of radicalization through education. Dr. Gagné just recently co-published The Global Impact of Religious Violence (Wipf and Stock, 2016) which examines why individuals and groups sometimes commit irremediable atrocities in the name of their faith, and offers some solutions on how to counter religiously inspired violence.

@profagagne 


HKhan400x400
Humera Khan

Humera Khan is the Executive Director of Muflehun, a resource center at the nexus of society, security and technology. Ms Khan designs and implements programs for prevention and intervention of violent extremism around the globe. She contributes in an advisory capacity to multi-national organizations, governments and law enforcement agencies in several countries. Ms Khan is the chair of the GCERF Independent Review Panel. In 2012 she received the FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award for her work and has testified before the US House Committee on Foreign Affairs on “Women’s Education: Promoting Development & Countering Radicalism.”

Ms Khan’s 18 years of experience in security strategy and knowledge of theology provide unique expertise for the design of metanarratives to counter online radicalization to extremism. Ms Khan specializes in scenario planning, strategy formulation and threat assessment using agent-based modelling, morphological analysis and system dynamics. Previously, as principal at a DC area think-tank, she designed and integrated methodologies for threat anticipation and risk assessment for the Singapore government “Risk Assessment and Horizon Scanning” initiative. She was also a team member designing energy security strategy for US government clients.

Ms Khan holds four degrees from MIT: MS Technology & Policy, MS Nuclear Engineering, BS Art & Design and BS Nuclear Engineering. She also has an MA in Islamic Studies from the School of Islamic and Social Sciences, an affiliate seminary of the Washington Theological Consortium.

Twitter: @khanserai


Shannon.Green.Photo
Shannon N. Green

Shannon N. Green is the Director and Senior Fellow of the Human Rights Initiative (HRI) at CSIS, where she conducts research on civil society, justice and accountability, and the security/human rights nexus. Ms. Green also managed CSIS’s Commission on Countering Violent Extremism, co-chaired by Tony Blair and Leon Panetta.

Prior to joining CSIS, Ms. Green was the Senior Director for Global Engagement on the National Security Council. In that role, she developed and coordinated policies and initiatives to deepen and broaden U.S. engagement with critical populations overseas, including spearheading the President’s Stand with Civil Society Agenda and young leader initiatives in sub-Saharan Africa, Southeast Asia, and the Western Hemisphere. She also led efforts to discredit and delegitimize ISIL and counter its propaganda.

From 2008 to 2013, Ms. Green worked at the Center of Excellence on Democracy, Human Rights, and Governance at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), where she developed policies, strategies, and programs to advance political reform and human rights in the Middle East and North Africa. Prior to that, she served in USAID’s Asia and Near East Bureau, where she was responsible for managing strategic planning, performance reporting, and budget formulation and pioneering new development approaches in fragile, conflict, and post-conflict environments.

Ms. Green received her B.A. in political science and history from the University of Georgia and her M.A. in international peace and conflict resolution from American University.

Twitter: @Shannison


NGlavin
Nicholas A. Glavin

Nicholas A. Glavin is a researcher at the United States Naval War College’s Center on Irregular Warfare and Armed Groups (CIWAG). He supports United States Special Operations Forces by analyzing the strategic decision-making of violent non-state actors around the globe. Nicholas’ areas of expertise include information warfare by state and non-state actors; the on- and off-line networks of violent extremists; and the interplay between friendly, neutral, and adversarial narratives in irregular conflicts. He has appeared as an analyst in a variety of American and international media outlets, including on television with FOX Business Network and BBC Two; on radio with BBC World Service; and in print with The New York Times and The National Interest.

Twitter : @nickglavin


PhilGurski
Phil Gurski

Phil Gurski is the President and CEO of Borealis Threat and Risk Consulting (www.borealisthreatandrisk.com).  He worked as a senior strategic analyst at CSIS (Canadian Security Intelligence Service) from 2001-2013, specializing in Al Qaeda/Islamic State-inspired violent extremism and radicalization.  From 1983 to 2001 he was employed as a senior multilingual analyst at Communications Security Establishment, specialising in the Middle East.  He also served as senior special advisor in the National Security Directorate at Public Safety Canada from 2013 until his retirement from the civil service in May 2015, and as consultant for the Ontario Provincial Police’s Anti-Terrorism Section (PATS) in 2015.  Mr. Gurski has presented on Al Qaeda/Islamic State-inspired violent extremism and radicalization across Canada and around the world.  He is the author of “The Threat from Within: Recognizing Al Qaeda-inspired Radicalization and Terrorism in the West” (Rowman and Littlefield) and the forthcoming “Western Foreign Fighters: the threat to homeland and international security” (Rowman and Littlefield).  He regularly blogs (Terrorism in Canada and the West – available on his Web site) and tweets (@borealissaves) on terrorism.  He is a visiting fellow at the International Centre for Counter Terrorism (ICCT) in the Netherlands and a fellow at Carleton University’s Norman Paterson School for International Affairs  (NPSIA)

Twitter: @borealissaves

http://www.borealisthreatandrisk.com/


Bio Pic_McDowellSmith
Dr. McDowell-Smith

Dr. McDowell-Smith is recognized as a counter-terrorism expert and is a senior research fellow for the International Center for the Study of Violent Extremism (ICSVE). She has published research that explores how the heuristic model of positive terror management and media depictions of terrorism influence perceptions of prejudice against different ethnic groups, specifically Arab-Americans. She currently serves as a violent extremism expert editor to Defence and Intelligence out of Norway, President of the Massachusetts Association of Criminal Justice Education (MACJE), and is also an Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice Management at Nichols College in the US.

Twitter: @allison_mcsmith @icsve


Photo K-Pontbriand
Karine Pontbriand

Karine Pontbriand is currently doing her residency at the Research Group on Cyber Diplomacy and Cyber Security (GCC) at the Montreal Institute of International Studies (IEIM). She has also been given a Junior Research Fellowship at the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada, where she has published "Canada-Japan Cyber Security Cooperation: Enhancing the Fight Against Cyber Threats". She is a member of the Research Group on International and Intercultural Communications (GERACII). Karine looks at the impact of cyberspace on international security. She holds a Bachelor in International Relations and International Law and is completing a Masters in International and Intercultural Communications at the University of Quebec in Montreal (UQAM). Before pursuing her Masters, she worked for 6 years as a journalist for different media outlets such as television network TVA and Quebecor Media Inc. Karine wishes to combine her professional experience and her academic studies to enhance international knowledge and research on cyber security and cyber diplomacy.

Twitter: @KPontbriand


AnneSpeckhard1
Anne Speckhard

Anne Speckhard, Ph.D. is Adjunct Associate Professor of Psychiatry in the School of Medicine and has also taught the Psychology of Terrorism for the Security Studies Department in the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. She is the Director of the International Center for the Study of Violent Extremism. Dr. Speckhard has been working in the field of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) since the 1980’s and has extensive experience working in Europe, the Middle East and the former Soviet Union. She was the chair of the NATO Human Factors & Medicine Research and Technology Experts Group (HFM-140/RTG) on the Psychosocial, Cultural and Organizational Aspects of Terrorism, served as the co-chair of the NATO-Russia Human Factors & Medicine Research Task Group on Social Sciences Support to Military Personnel Engaged in Counter-Insurgency and Counter-Terrorism Operations and served on the NATO Human Factors & Medicine Research Task Group Moral Dilemmas and Military Mental Health Outcomes. She is a member of the United Nations Roster of Experts for the Terrorism Prevention Branch Office on Drugs and Crime and was previously awarded a Public Health Service Fellowship in the United States Department of Health & Human Services where she served as a Research Fellow.

She has provided expert consultation to European and Middle Eastern governments as well as the U.S. Department of Defense regarding programs for prevention and rehabilitation of individuals committed to political violence and militant jihad.  In 2006-2007 she worked with the U.S. Department of Defense to design and pilot test the Detainee Rehabilitation Program in Iraq.  In 2002, she interviewed hostages taken in the Moscow Dubrovka Theater about their psychological responses and observations of the suicidal terrorists and did the same in 2005 with surviving hostages from the Beslan school take-over. Since 2002, she has collected more than four hundred research interviews of family members, friends, close associates and hostages of terrorists and militant jihadi extremists in Palestine, Israel, Iraq, Lebanon, Jordan, Morocco, Russia, Chechnya, Belarus, Canada, the United Statese, Netherlands, United Kingdom, Belgium and France.

Dr. Speckhard is the director of the Holocaust Survivors Oral Histories Project – Belarus, a project constructing the history of the Minsk Ghetto and Holocaust in Belarus through oral histories and archival research. She also researched traumatic stress issues in survivors of the Chernobyl disaster and has written about stress responses to toxic disasters. Dr. Speckhard worked with American expatriates after 9-11 (at SHAPE, NATO, the U.S. Embassy to Belgium and Mission to the EU) and conducted research on acute stress responses to terrorism in this population.  She also studies psychological resilience to terrorism in various populations including American civilians, military and diplomats serving in Iraq under high threat security conditions. Dr. Speckhard co-directed the NATO Advanced Research Workshops – Ideologies of Terrorism: Understanding and Predicting the Social, Psychological and Political Underpinnings of Terrorism and Understanding and Addressing the Root Causes of Radicalization among Groups with an Immigrant Heritage in Europe and served on the NATO/Russia Counter-Terrorism Advisory Group.

Dr. Speckhard has consulted to NATO, OSCE, foreign governments and the U.S. Departments of State, Defense, Justice, Homeland Security, Health & Human Services, CIA and FBI.  She is a sought after speaker, media expert and consultant on the subject of terrorism frequently appearing on CNN, BBC, NPR, Fox News, MSNBC, CTV, and in Time, the New York Times, the Washington Post, London Times and many other publications. She frequently lectures on subjects related to her books and research studies.  She is the author of seven books including: Talking to Terrorists: Understanding the Psycho-Social Motivations of Militant Jihadi Terrorists, Mass Hostage Takers, Suicide Bombers and “Martyrs”, Bride of ISIS: One Young Woman’s Path Into Homegrown Terrorism, Fetal Abduction: The True Story of Multiple Personalities and Murder,Timothy Tottle’s Terrific Crocodiles, and Timothy Tottle’s Terrific Dream and co-author of Undercover Jihadi: Inside the Toronto 18—Al Qaeda Inspired, Homegrown Terrorism in the West and Warrior Princess: A U.S. Navy SEAL’s Journey to Coming out Transgender.

Twitter: @AnneSpeckhard


Vivek-Venkatesh
Vivek Venkatesh

Vivek Venkatesh is Associate Professor in the Department of Education at Concordia University and former Acting Director of the Centre for the Study of Learning and Performance. Vivek is an interdisciplinary and applied learning scientist who investigates the psychological, cultural and cognitive factors impacting the design, development and inclusive adoption of digital media in educational and social contexts. Vivek is director of the federally-funded SOMEONE (Social Media Education Every Day) initiative which will see the creation of an web portal dedicated to sensitizing the Canadian public to the ill effects of hate speech and building resilience against radicalization.


Michelle Waintraub

Public Safety Canada / Sécurité publique Canada

 


Jeff_Weyers
Jeff Weyers

Jeff Weyers is a decorated police veteran from Ontario, Canada with an academic background in investigative psychology and intelligence studies. He is currently working on his PhD examining tools for identifying persons vulnerable to recruitment to violent extremism. Over the last several years he has presented to and assisted police agencies around the globe in developing their CVE approaches. He is a regular contributing author to the Terrorism Research & Analysis Consortium (TRAC). Jeff is also a Senior Intelligence Research Analyst with iBRABO, an open source intelligence research startup based in Waterloo Canada. As a lead analyst in the collection of OSINT data within Syria since 2015 he has developed an intimate understanding of many of the groups and conflict dynamics in the region. He is a recognized expert in terrorist’s use of social media and open source intelligence gathering and has assisted both government and intelligence agencies in this regard. 

Twitter: @NicheIntel


Should you be interested in becoming a member of the Digital Fellows Network, please contact us at migs@concordia.ca 

montreal-colour-horizontal
Back to top

© Concordia University