ICSA Annual Conference:  Synergy Between Cults and Terror Groups

Darin Challacombe, Ph.D.

ICSA Annual Conference
Friday, June 24th
1:00 PM-1:50 PM


Previous research has shown religious organizations are more similar to terror or violent extremist organizations than they are dissimilar. Individuals who join both usually have similar characteristics. As contemporary researchers have focused more on terror groups than cults, the archival knowledge from cult survivors and years of cult research have not been adequately illuminated as a guide for terror studies. Using the PRISMA methodology (Moher et al., 2009), I examine the literature of religious cult recruitment, terror organization recruitment and radicalization, and illuminate the multiple confluences between them. Just as cults and terror organizations are similar in many other aspects, they also tend to follow similar recruitment patterns. Understanding cult recruitment should be used to assist terror researchers.

Darin Challacombe

Fort Hays State University

Mr. Challacombe is a researcher, professor, and author in the field of terrorism. His main research focus has been on domestic terrorism and structure professional judgement tools, especially the TRAP-18 (Meloy & Gill, 2016). Mr. Challacombe has a Ph.D. in Social Psychology and is on the faculty for Fort Hays State University. Mr. Challacombe has previous real-world experience in terrorism as a senior intelligence analyst for a United States agency. His other research focuses involve personality changes and attraction.

Register: https://whova.com/web/icsaa_202207/