Lorne Dawson

Senior Research Affiliate

Dr. Lorne L. Dawson is a Full Professor in the Department of Sociology and Legal Studies and the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Waterloo. He has written three books, edited four books, and published sixty two academic articles and book chapters. Most of his research is in the sociology of religion, particularly the study of new religious movements, charismatic authority, millennialist movements, and the failure of prophecy. His work on why some new religions become violent led to research on the process of radicalization in homegrown terrorist groups, which is now the primary focus of his research (e.g., “The Study of New Religious Movements and the Process of Radicalization in Home-grown Terrorist Groups,” Terrorism and Political Violence, 22, 2010: 1-21). He is the Co-Director of the Canadian Network for Research on Terrorism, Security and Society (www.tsas.ca), and co-editor of Religious Radicalization and Securitization in Canada and Beyond (University of Toronto Press, 2014). One of his current projects is a qualitative study of Canadian foreign fighters, along with their family and friends. He has made numerous invited presentations on the radicalization of terrorists to academic and government groups (e.g., Defence Research and Development Canada, CSIS, Public Safety Canada, U.S. Homeland Security, Global Futures Forum, British Security Intelligence, Metropolis, Conference Board of Canada, the RCMP National Security Criminal Investigations Program, and various RCMP INSET units), and he is frequently interviewed in the media about terrorism.


Talking to Foreign Fighters: Socio-Economic Push versus Existential Pull Factors
Published in 2016 • TSAS WP16-14
Amarnath Amarasingam, Alexandra Bain and Lorne Dawson

Trying to Talk to Terrorists: Ethical and Methodological Challenges in Canada
Published in 2016 • TSAS WP16-13
Amarnath Amarasingam and Lorne Dawson

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