Politics and International Relations


Harmonie Toros’ research lies at the crossroad between conflict resolution/conflict transformation, peace studies, and terrorism studies. She has published seminal work developing a critical theory-based approach to terrorism and examining the transformation of conflicts marked by terrorist violence (her ThinkKent talk can be found here). She has carried out extensive field research in Europe, the Middle East, South East Asia, and Africa researching state and non-state armed groups as well as investigating the human experience of war from combatant and non-combatant perspectives. Her current research focuses on incorporating war experience into the study of conflict, examining some of the key methodological and epistemological challenges involved in translating war experience into knowledge. In 2015, Harmonie was awarded the University’s Inaugural Research Prize (Early Career Researchers Category). She is an editor of the journal Critical Studies on Terrorism and a member of the International Studies Association (ISA) and British International Studies Association (BISA). She also publishes on pedagogical issues surrounding the teaching of human experience in war, based on her third-year undergraduate Humans at War module. The innovative design and delivery of the module was recognised in 2017 by the Political Studies Association with the Sir Bernard Crick Award for Outstanding Teaching and by Kent’s Faculty of Social Sciences Teaching Award in 2016. 

She joined the School in 2011 after lecturing at the University of Queensland, Australia and the University of Canterbury, New Zealand. She completed her PhD (“Terrorism, Talking and Transformation: Northern Ireland and Mindanao”) at the Department of International Politics of Aberystwyth University in 2010. Following a BA in Contemporary History (Sussex) and a Maîtrise in History (Paris IV- Sorbonne), she worked as reporter and editor for major international news agencies (The Associated Press and Agence France-Presse) before returning to academia in 2003 to complete a Masters in Conflict Resolution (Bradford).

Contact Information


Rutherford W4.S8

Academic office hours are available on the Moodle Student Guide

Available for: TV Radio Press Consultancy Expertise: Terrorism and Political Violence Conflict Resolution Conflict Transformation Negotiation Regional Expertise: Europe Southeast Asia Middle East. Country Expertise: Philippines Northern Ireland Turkey. Languages: English French Italian (Native speaker) Turkish (Fluent)

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Also view these in the Kent Academic Repository

Toros, H. et al. (2018). "Where is War? We are War." Teaching and Learning the Human Experience of War in the Classroom. International Studies Perspectives [Online] 19:199-217. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1093/isp/ekx012.
Toros, H. (2017). "9/11 is alive and well" or how critical terrorism studies has sustained the 9/11 narrative. Critical Studies on Terrorism [Online] 10:203-219. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17539153.2017.1337326.
Jackson, R. et al. (2017). Introduction: 10 years of Critical Studies on Terrorism. Critical Studies on Terrorism [Online] 10:197-202. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1080/17539153.2017.1338279.
Toros, H. (2016). Dialogue, Praxis and the State: A Response to Richard Jackson. Critical Studies on Terrorism [Online] 9:126-130. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17539153.2016.1147775.
Toros, H. and Mavelli, L. (2014). Collective evil and individual pathology: The depoliticization of violence against Afghan civilians. International Politics [Online] 51:508-524. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1057/ip.2014.23.
Toros, H. and Tellidis, I. (2013). From paramilitarism to peacebuilding in Northern Ireland: an interview with Noel Large. Critical Studies on Terrorism [Online] 6:209-215. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17539153.2013.765707.
Toros, H. and Tellidis, I. (2013). Editors' introduction: Terrorism and peace and conflict studies: investigating the crossroad. Critical Studies on Terrorism 6:1-12.
Toros, H. and Mavelli, L. (2013). Terrorism, Organised Crime and the Biopolitics of Violence. Critical Studies on Terrorism [Online] 6:73-91. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17539153.2013.765701.
Toros, H. (2008). "We don't negotiate with terrorists!": Legitimacy and complexity in terrorist conflicts. Security Dialogue [Online] 39:407-426. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0967010608094035.
Toros, H. (2008). Terrorists, scholars and ordinary people: confronting terrorism studies with field experiences. Critical Studies on Terrorism [Online] 1:279-292. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17539150802184652.
Book section
Toros, H. and Harley, S. (2018). Negotiations with Al-Shabaab: Lessons Learned and Future Prospects. in: Keating, M. and Waldman, M. eds. War and Peace in Somalia: National Grievances, Local Conflict and Al-Shabaab. New York: Hurst. Available at: https://www.hurstpublishers.com/book/war-and-peace-in-somalia/.
Toros, H. and Dionigi, F. (2017). International Society and Islamist Non-State Actors: The Case of the Islamic State Organization. in: Suganami, H., Carr, M. and Humphreys, A. eds. The Anarchical Society at 40: Contemporary Challenges and Prospects. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 145-161. Available at: https://global.oup.com/academic/product/the-anarchical-society-at-40-9780198805144?cc=gb&lang=en&.
Toros, H. (2016). Critical Theory and Terrorism Studies: Ethics and Emancipation. in: Jackson, R. ed. Routledge Handbook of Critical Terrorism Stuides. Abingdon, UK: Routledge, pp. 70-79. Available at: https://www.routledge.com/Routledge-Handbook-of-Critical-Terrorism-Studies/Jackson/p/book/9780415743761.
Toros, H. (2015). Terrorists as Co-Participants? Outline of a Research Model. in: Dixit, P. and Stump, J. L. eds. Critical Methods in Terrorism Studies. Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge, pp. 49-59. Available at: https://www.routledge.com/products/9781138018723.
Toros, H. (2012). Talking: A potential path to reconciliation in Mindanao. in: Renner, J. and Spencer, A. eds. Reconciliation after terrorism: Strategy, possibility or absurdity? Abingdon: Routledge, pp. 167-185. Available at: http://www.routledge.com/books/details/9780415588584/.
Toros, H. (2012). From dissent to revolution: politics and violence. in: The Ashgate Research Companion to Political Violence. Farnham: Ashgate, pp. 119-136. Available at: http://www.ashgate.com/isbn/9780754677529.
Toros, H. and Gunning, J. (2009). Exploring a critical theory approach to terrorism studies. in: Jackson, R., Smyth, M. B. and Gunning, J. eds. Critical Terrorism Studies: A new research agenda. Abingdon: Routledge, pp. 87-108. Available at: http://www.routledge.com/books/details/9780415574150/.
Toros, H. (2012). Terrorism, Talking and Transformation: A Critical Approach. [Online]. Abingdon: Routledge. Available at: http://www.routledge.com/books/details/9780415683920/.
Edited book
Tellidis, I. and Toros, H. eds. (2015). Researching Terrorism, Peace and Conflict Studies: Interaction, Synthesis and Opposition. [Online]. Routledge. Available at: http://www.routledge.com/books/details/9781138018174/.
Toros, H. and Tellidis, I. eds. (2014). Terrorism, Peace and Conflict Studies: Investigating the Crossroad. [Online]. Abingdon: Routledge. Available at: http://www.tandf.net/books/details/9781138784772/.
Edited journal
Jackson, R. et al. eds. (2017). 10 Years of Critical Studies on Terrorism. Critical Studies on Terrorism [Online] 10:197-377. Available at: http://www.tandfonline.com/toc/rter20/10/2.
Toros, H. and Tellidis, I. eds. (2013). Terrorism and Peace and Conflict Studies: Investigating the Crossroad. Critical Studies on Terrorism 6:1-223.
Internet publication
Toros, H. (2016). What's wrong with negotiating with terrorists? [Website]. Available at: http://thecrimereport.org/2016/07/16/whats-wrong-with-negotiating-with-terrorists/.
Toros, H. (2014). The Possibility of Negotiating with Terrorists [Online publication]. Available at: http://www.fairobserver.com/politics/the-possibility-of-negotiating-with-terrorists-88725/.
Research report (external)
Toros, H. (2015). Terrorism, Counterterrorism, and Conflict Resolution: Building Bridges. [Online]. NATO Centre of Excellence - Defence Against Terrorism. Available at: http://www.coedat.nato.int/publication/researches/03-ConflictResolution.pdf.
Toros, H. (2017). English, R. Does terrorism work? A history. Critical Studies on Terrorism [Online] 10:562-563. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1080/17539153.2017.1336291.
Toros, H. (2014). Confessions of a Terrorist: A Novel. Critical Studies on Terrorism [Online]:00-00. Available at: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/17539153.2014.945309#.VGDd6ousXIY.
Total publications in KAR: 27 [See all in KAR]
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Research Interests

Harmonie’s research focuses on developing a critical and experiential approach to the study of terrorism and political violence, in particular examining the potential for conflict resolution and conflict transformation responses to conflicts marked by terrorist violence and investigating how human experience can be incorporated into its study. Her work involves investigating how to further ground the study of terrorism but also conflict analysis and transformative practices in social and political theory (in particular the work of the Frankfurt School but also that of Pierre Bourdieu). She has carried out field research in conflicts in Northern Ireland and the southern Philippine region of Mindanao and is now focusing on conflict resolution/transformation initiatives involving armed groups in Somalia. Her research also focuses on developing a methodological framework through which to incorporate experiential knowledge of conflict and political violence into its study, as well as examining potential synergies with other disciplines including literary studies, psychoanalysis, and biosciences.

Research Supervision

Harmonie is interested in supervising projects in terrorism studies and critical terrorism studies, conflict resolution and conflict transformation, critical security studies and ethnography of violence.

Current PhD students:

Recep Onursal
Hegemony and Logics of Kurdish Conflict in Turkey

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Last Updated: 01/10/2018