How the “internal brakes” on violent escalation work and fail: Towards a conceptual framework for understanding intra-group processes of restraint in militant groups

Joel Busher, Donald Holbrook, Graham Macklin

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Abstract

This article advances the emergent literature on restraint within militant groups in three ways. First, it offers a framework for situating the “internal brakes on violent escalation” – understood as the practices through which group members shape the outer limits of their action repertoires – in relation to the interplay between conflict dynamics, intra-group processes and individual-level decision making. Second, it develops a basic analytical strategy for examining how such brakes operate at different levels of proximity to potential or actual instances of escalation. Third, it sets out four types of mechanisms through which internal brakes appear to generate or enable restraint.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)(In-press)
Number of pages22
JournalStudies in Conflict and Terrorism
Volume(In-press)
Early online date18 Jan 2021
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 18 Jan 2021

Bibliographical note

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited

Funder

Centre for Research and Evidence on Security Threats (ESRC Award: ES/N009614/1)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Safety Research
  • Political Science and International Relations

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