On Wednesday, February 3 at 10:00 a.m. ET, University of Essex Senior Lecturer Dr. Brian J. Phillips will provide a virtual talk on “How Did 9/11 Affect Terrorism Research? A Look at Disciplines and Gender.” This event is free and open to the public, but RSVPs are required.
Terrorism research increased markedly after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Beyond increasing, how has research on this subject changed in the past 20 years? I examine data on more than 6,000 academic articles on terrorism between 1970 and 2019, and the more than 1,600 authors of multiple articles. Several interesting findings emerge. (1) The post-9/11 proliferation of terrorism research does not appear to be winding down. (2) The proportion of terrorism research in terrorism and conflict journals decreased after 9/11, with other types of journals starting to publish a great deal of terrorism research. (3) Psychologists became the dominant subgroup of terrorism researchers after 9/11, displacing Political Scientists, although this trend appears to have now reversed. (4) The proportion of female scholars increased substantially after 9/11, outpacing the rise in academia generally. The seems to be at least in part because scholars new to the field after 9/11 were often from relatively gender-balanced disciplines such as psychology.