Dr Richard McNeil-Willson is a Research Fellow at the Global Governance Programme, the Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies, European University Institute, in Florence. He critically researches policy and practice around extremism and counterterrorism, with a focus on Europe.
Current projects include the Building Resilience against Violent Extremism and Polarisation (BRaVE) project, funded by the European Commission's Horizon2020 programme, and the Counterterrorism And Safeguarding in Response to Islamic State (CASIS) Project, funded by the European University Institute, Florence and the Graduate Institute, Geneva. Richard is also a consultant researcher for the European Commission Directorate-General for Migration and Home Affairs, developing new European policy towards Far Right violence in European Member States, and was International Advisor for the CHAMPIONs Project at the Peace Action, Training and Research Institute of Romania (PATRIR), Cluj-Napoca.
Richard has a PhD from the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies, University of Exeter, as an Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) scholar, exploring the impact of counterterrorism programmes, policy and policing on Islamic activist organisations in Britain and Denmark. He holds additional degrees from the universities of Edinburgh, Durham and Exeter (UK) and visiting positions at the Centre on Social Movement Studies - Scuola Normale Superiore (Italy) and the University of Aarhus (Denmark).