For the past 30 years, I have been calling for the adoption of an international definition of terrorism. I have done and continue to do so against all odds, and in contradiction to the most commonly-held position of counter-terrorism experts, scholars, legal experts, decision makers and lay leaders. I do so because I genuinely believe that defining terrorism is both crucial and possible, and because I believe that once terrorism has been consensually defined, that definition will become a pillar of much better and more effective international cooperation on counter- terrorism.
Our incredible first female Principal and Vice Chancellor of the University of St Andrews and a political scientist whose specialist field is the study of terrorism. She is the author of highly-acclaimed works on terrorism and has given over 300 talks on terrorism and counter-terrorism. She is also a fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.
Interview with Prof Alex Schmid about defining terrorism.