Carola García-Calvo

Senior Analyst
12 articles published

Carola García-Calvo, is a Senior Analyst in the Programme on Violent Radicalisation and Global Terrorism at the Elcano Royal Institute, and associate professor at the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos (URJC), both in Madrid. She is currently Research and Innovation Coordinator of the Radicalisation Awareness Network-Policy Support project (RAN-PS). Between 2017 and 2020 she was the scientific coordinator of the European H2020 project “Developing a comprehensive approach to violent radicalisation in the EU from early understanding to improving protection” (MINDb4ACT).

She holds a PhD in Political Science (Extraordinary Doctorate Award), a Master’s degree in Democracy and Government from the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (UAM), and in Globalisation from the Instituto Universitario de Investigación Ortega y Gasset. She has been an associate lecturer at the Universidad Pontificia Comillas (ICADE) and international visiting professor at the Center for Security Studies at Georgetown University (GU), as well as coordinator of the Master in Terrorism Studies at the Universidad Internacional de La Rioja (UNIR).

Her merits include being a member of the Scientific Committee of the CIFAL-Malaga (ONU), and of the Advisory Board of the Europol Counter-Terrorism Centre. In addition, she has been distinguished with the Order of Merit of the Republic of France, and with the Medal for Police Merit (white badge), of the State Secretariat for Security of the Ministry of the Interior, Government of Spain. She was beneficiary of the International Visitors Leadership Program (IVLP) awarded by the U.S State Department.

Main research areas: the evolution of global terrorism and the jihadist threat, as well as the processes of violent radicalisation in Spain, Europe and other Western countries, and the national and supranational responses to terrorism (strategies, policies and programmes). In recent years, she has paid special attention to the role of women in extremist and terrorist groups and the inclusion of the gender perspective in studies on terrorism and the prevention of violent radicalisation (P/CVE issues).

Research areas: Global Terrorism and counterterrorism, processes of violent radicalisation in the Western world, preventing violent radicalisation, and de-radicalisation strategies, programmes and policies, with a particular focus on the specific role of women.

Selected publications: 

Recent articles

Facetas de la movilización de mujeres europeas hacia grupos extremistas y terroristas: un estado de la cuestión (Real Instituto Elcano, 2022);  Atentados en Barcelona y Cambrils: (I) formación de la célula de Ripoll, radicalización de sus miembros y preparación de unos actos de terrorismo a gran escala (Real Instituto Elcano, 2022); How Members of the Islamic State-Linked Ripoll Cell Grouped, Radicalized and Plotted Mass Casualty Terrorist Attacks in Barcelona (with F. Reinares, Studies in Conflict &Terrorism 2022); El dilema de repatriar a mujeres vinculadas a Estado Islámico desde los campos de Al Hol y Al Roj en Siria (Real Instituto Elcano, 2022);  Linking the August 2017 Attacks in Barcelona and Cambrils to Islamic State External Security Apparatus Through Foreign Fighters (with F. Reinares, Perspectives on Terrorism, 2021); Extremist Offender Management in Spain (with A. Vicente, ICSR 2020); Evaluación de proyectos a pequeña escala en materia de prevención de la radicalización violenta: una visión aplicada (with Á. Vicente, Real Instituto Elcano 2019); Un análisis de los atentados terroristas en Barcelona y Cambrils (with F. Reinares, Real Instituto Elcano 2018); Las relaciones bilaterales España-Portugal en la lucha contra el terrorismo global y la prevención de la radicalización violenta (2017); Actividad yihadista en España, 2013-2017: de la Operación Cesto en Ceuta a los atentados en Cataluña (with F. Reinares, 2017); Dos factores que explican la radicalización yihadista en España (with F. Reinares y Á. Vicente, Análisis del Real Instituto Elcano, 2017); “The Role of the Internet in the Jihadist Mobilisation of Women in Spain“ (Vox-Pol Blog, 2017); ‘No hay vida sin yihad y no hay yihad sin hégira’: la movilización yihadista de mujeres en España, 2014-2016″ (Real Instituto Elcano, 2017). 

Preventing violent extremism: Current trends and debates in Europe (Ed., 2020); Yihadismo y yihadistas en España. Quince años después del 11-M (with F. Reinares y Á. Vicente, Real Instituto Elcano, 2019); Estado Islámico en España (with F. Reinares, Real Instituto Elcano, 2016).

Elcano Blog

Radicalización violenta y políticas de prevención. Una cuestión de género (2021); Crisis del coronavirus: la pandemia según los yihadistas (2020); Vínculos entre criminalidad y terrorismo yihadista en España (2018); “Ciudades resilientes a la amenaza del terrorismo yihadista. “This is a place where we stand strong together” (Elcano Blog, 2017);  Prevención de la radicalización violenta: si ves algo, di algo (2016); Yihadismo en España: pautas, cambios y continuidad desde el 11-M (Elcano Blog, 2016); Boko Haram, el rayo que no cesa (Elcano Blog, 2015); Los españoles ante el Estado Islámico y la coalición internacional contra el yihadismo (Elcano Blog, 2014); La amenaza del retorno y el mal menor (Elcano Blog, 2014).


  • Roundtable ‘Jihadism and Terrorism in Spain, 20 Years After 11-M’ (2024)
  • 9th Elcano Forum on Global Terrorism  “Terrorism-related extremisms in the West: Emerging and persisting challenges” (2022)
  • EUTEx Living Lab in Madrid (2022)

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