Back to overview
Press release

ICCT Annual Conference 2019: Lessons from the Past, Dilemmas of the Present and Challenges for the Future: What is an 'effective' CT strategy

16 May 2019

The International Centre for Counter-Terrorism – The Hague (ICCT) hosted its Annual Conference on the topic "Lessons from the Past, Dilemmas of the Present and Challenges for the Future". The event was hosted at T.M.C Asser Instituut on Thursday 16 and Friday 17th May 2019.

On 16 and 17 May 2019, the International Centre for Counter-Terrorism – The Hague (ICCT – The Hague) hosted its Annual Conference on ‘Lessons from the Past, Dilemmas of the Present and Challenges for the Future: What is an ‘Effective’ Counter-Terrorism Strategy?’, at  T.M.C Asser Instituut.

In the aftermath of events such as 9/11 (US), 7/7 (UK), 13/11 (Paris) and similar others, states have sought to adapt their counter-terrorism toolkit to the threat of terrorism. Domestically, certain European states have engaged in what has been described as counter-terrorism ‘legislative fever’. Simultaneously, counter-terrorism and security strategies were fervently updated to respond more effectively to the threat of terrorism – both domestically and at regional level. The swiftness in adopting and/or updating counter-terrorism measures and strategies has, however, left limited time to engage in reflection and evaluation of what makes a counter-terrorism measure or strategy effective.

Without trying to be all-inclusive, the Annual Conference and the individual sessions aimed at reflecting on various aspects of domestic and regional counter-terrorism policies, what lessons could have been learn from them going forward and the bad practices to avoid for the present and future.Each individual session featured 3 speakers and allow time for interactive discussions.

Speakers from multi-disciplinary backgrounds reflected on the following issues:

  • Countering Extremism: Freedom of Speech vs. Incitement to Terrorism (regional ECHR and EU obligations);
  • The Use of Immigration Powers such as Deprivation of Nationality in Counter-Terrorism;
  • Lessons to be learnt from ‘The Troubles’ in Northern Ireland and the US War on Terror;
  • The Importance of Databases and Quantitative Methods in Counter-Terrorism
  • Identifying and Distinguishing between Radicalisation and Extremism;
  • Countering the Enduring Issues in the Study of Terrorism;
  • The Role of Communities and NGOs in CT and CVE;
  • Combatting Extreme and Radical Narratives Online;

The Opening Keynote on ‘What is Terrorism? What is Extremism? – Lessons from the Past’ was provided by Professor Isabelle Duyvesteyn (Leiden University).

The Closing Keynote was provided by Renske van der Veer, Director of the International Centre of Counter-Terrorism (ICCT-The Hague).

The conference was fully booked. 

Read the draft programme.

Read the full event description