Gina Vale is a Research Fellow at ICSR and a PhD Candidate in War Studies at King’s College London. Her research interests centre on gender-sensitive analyses of terrorism and extremist violence. Her PhD thesis explores the (disproportionate) impact of Islamic State governance on women in Iraq and Syria. The study seeks to move beyond the sensationalised media reports and academic studies of ISIS’ ultra-violence, instead uncovering the myriad everyday experiences of the group’s female ‘citizens’. Extensive semi-structured interviews with women who have lived under ISIS rule between the period of 2014 to 2017 (from the declaration of the caliphate to the group’s military defeat), as well as ISIS’ official propaganda and social media posts from its members, will provide the central data for the research.
Beyond her PhD, she also studies issues such as women’s (de)radicalisation, terrorist groups’ policies and propaganda for female supporters, roles of female extremists and combatants, and the increasing use and exploitation of child terrorists. She holds an MA in Terrorism, Security and Society with Distinction from King’s College London, and a BA (Hons) in Asian and Middle Eastern Studies from the University of Cambridge for which she spent over a year living and working in Jordan.