Why Misery Loves Company: The Rise of Conspiracy Theories and Violent Extremism

Policy Brief by Raul Rios


The aim of this policy brief is to provide an overview of some key research recently published examining conspiracy theories and their possible links to violence, particularly violent extremism. The research cited is meant as a starting point for policymakers and decision-makers (yet without claiming to be fully exhaustive). Second, this policy brief seeks to highlight some of the key trends and dynamics between conspiracy theories and the acts of violence associated with them, by looking at how one may influence the other. The policy brief concludes by suggesting a series of recommendations for policymakers and decision-makers to consider when developing new policies to tackle extremist groups which have integrated conspiracy theories promoting violence into their milieus or narratives.