» The Division on the Study of Violence and Radicalization

The Earl Babbie Research Center’s Division for the Study of Violence and Radicalization at Chapman University promotes the scientific study of the causes and consequences of different types of violence with a special focus on street gangs, hate crimes, and terrorism. Our mission is to promote nonviolent, evidence-based solutions designed to mitigate the detrimental effects of these social problems. The research we conduct is aimed at improving public awareness and understanding as well as informing public policy. As part of this effort, the Division produces book-length manuscripts, scholarly journal articles, policy briefs, presentations, and provides consultation to government officials, non-governmental organizations, and journalists covering stories related to different types of violence.

The Division draws from the Director’s long-term data collection related to violence and radicalization including the utilization of intensive ethnographic fieldwork, life history interviews, psychometric instruments, and neuroimaging experimentation. The Division also draws from a wide range of collaborative relationships including partnerships with some of the following institutions: the Anti-Defamation League, Life After Hate/EXIT USA, National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and the Consequences of Terrorism (START), RTI International, Simon Wiesenthal Center, Southern Poverty Law Center, the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, the University of Nebraska at Omaha, and the University of Oslo.

+ - Recent publications, articles and resources

Swastica BookNew edition of American Swastika: Inside the White Power Movement’s Hidden Spaces of Hate published in 2015 by Pete Simi and Robert Futrell 

Peer Review Scholarly Articles & Book Chapters 

  • Simi, Pete, Karyn Sporer and Bryan Bubolz. 2016. “Narratives of Childhood Adversities and Adolescent Misconduct as Precursors to Violent Extremism: A Life-Course Criminological Approach.” Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency, 53, 4: 536-63

  • Simi, Pete, Robert Futrell, and Bryan Bubolz. 2016. “Parenting as Protest: Identity Alignment among White Power Activists.” The Sociological Quarterly, 57: 491-516. 

  • Windisch, Steven, Pete Simi, Gina Scott Ligon, and Hillary McNeel. 2016. “Disengagement from Ideologically-Based and Violent Organizations: A Systematic Review of the Literature.” Journal for Deradicalization, 9:1-38. 

  • Harris, Daniel, Pete Simi, and Gina Ligon. 2016. “Reporting Practices for Studies Involving Interviews with Extremists.” Studies in Conflict and Terrorism, 39: 602-16.

  • Simi, Pete and Bryan Bubolz. 2016. “Far Right Terrorism in the United States.” In Handbook of the Criminology of Terrorism edited by Gary LaFree and Joshua Freilich. Wiley Press. 

  • Windisch, S., & Simi, Pete. Forthcoming. “Trends in Neo-Nazi Music.” In S. Brown and O. Sefiha (Eds.), Routledge Handbook of Deviance. New York, NY: Taylor & Francis.

  • Futrell, Robert, Pete Simi, and Anna Tan. Forthcoming. “Political Extremism and Social Movements.” The Wiley Blackwell Companion to Social Movements edited by David Snow, Sarah Soule, Hanspeter Kriesi, and Holly McCammon. Wiley.  


Past and Current Funding Sources: 

  • Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation
  • National Institute of Justice
  • National Science Foundation 
  • Department of Homeland Security
  • Department of Defense 


Links to Additional Resources: 

+ - Upcoming Presentations

February, 2017: Simi, Pete. “Lessons from the Field: Studying Far Right Extremism.” Presented at Northwestern University, Evanston, IL.
More information.

March, 2017: Simi, Pete. “Hidden Spaces of Hate: Studying Far Right Extremism.” Presented at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA.
More information.

March 20-21, 2017: MaUS Strategic Command (STRATCOM), “Psychology of Terrorism” hosted by the University of Nebraska, Omaha