Academic Qualifications

2011 – 2016: PhD: “Giving them a voice: narratives of political violence in Portugal” Institute of Social Applied Studies, University of Birmingham, UK; Supervisors: Dr Nicolas Hébert-Lemay and Dr Harriet Clarke
2009 – 2010: Master in Psychology of Justice (result: 19/20), University of Minho, Portugal • Dissertation “The armed political struggle in Portugal: the perspective of its actors”.
2006 – 2007: Erasmus Exchange, University of Geneva
2005 – 2008: Degree in Psychology (result: 16/20), University of Minho, Portugal

Biographical Information

Raquel Beleza da Silva is a Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellow (MSCA-IF) at the Center for International Studies at Iscte. Her research explores processes of engagement in and disengagement from violent organisations through the narrative study of the life stories of former militants and their families. She is also interested on the intersection between non-violent and violent activism and on the impact of Preventing/Countering Violent Extremism (P/CVE) interventions in the life of individuals, groups, and communities. Raquel values creative public engagement and the translation of research into practice and policy. Raquel also acts as Assistant Editor to the Journal of Intervention and Statebuilding and tweets at @RaquelBPSilva


Key Publications


da Silva, R. (2019) Narratives of political violence: life stories of former militants. London: Routledge.


Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles

da Silva, R., Rosa, C. and König, J. (2020) “I’m not the same, but I’m not sorry”: Exploring dialogical positioning in the self-transformation of a former politically violent militant. Journal of Constructivist Psychology. 33:3, 248-262.

Silva, J. R., da Silva, R., Fernández-Navarro, P., Gonçalves, M. M. and Rosa, C. (2020) Understanding extreme violent behaviour in ultra firms: Exploring identity fusion from a dialogical perspective. Journal of Constructivist Psychology. 33:3, 263-278.

Marchi, R. and da Silva, R. (2019) Political violence from the extreme right in contemporary Portugal. Perspectives on Terrorism. 13:6, 27-42.

da Silva, R., Fernández-Narravo, P., Gonçalves, M. M., Rosa, C. and Silva, J. (2019) Tracking narrative change in the context of extremism and terrorism: Adapting the Innovative Moments Coding System. Aggression and Violent Behavior. doi: 10.1016/j.avb.2019.05.002.

da Silva, R. and Ferreira, A. (2019) The post-dictatorship memory politics in Portugal that erased political violent activism from the collective memory. Integrative Psychological and Behavioural Science. 53:1, 24-43.

da Silva, R., Fernández-Navarro, P., Gonçalves, M. M., Rosa, C. and Silva, J. (2018) Disengagement from political violence and deradicalisation: A narrative-dialogical perspective. Studies in Conflict and Terrorism, 43:6, 431-454.

Pinilla-Roncancio, M. and da Silva, R. (2018) Children in Angola: Poverty, deprivation and child labour. Child Indicators Research. 11, 901-1005.

da Silva, R. (2017) Narrative resources and political violence: the life stories of former clandestine militants in Portugal. Contemporary Social Sciences. 12:1-2, 40-51.

da Silva, R. and Crilley, R. (2017) ‘Talk about terror in our back gardens’: An analysis of online comments about British foreign fighters in Syria. Critical Studies on Terrorism. 10:1, 162-186.

da Silva, R. and Machado, C. (2012) O envolvimento na luta armada política em Portugal: a perspectiva dos seus actors. [The involvement in the political armed struggle in Portugal: the perspective of its actors]. Análise Psicológica, 1:3, 193-213.


Book Chapters

da Silva, R., Barbosa Mariana, Ventura, J., & Carvalho, C. (in press). O papel do psicólogo no âmbito do combate ao recrutamento e radicalização de jovens extremistas. Ordem dos Psicólogos Portugueses.

da Silva, R., Fontana, G. and Armstrong, M. (2020). The Prevent Duty in primary schools: Policy enactment in the West Midlands. In Jerome, L. and Busher, J. (eds.), The Prevent Duty in Education: Enactment, Impact and Implications. London: Palgrave Pivot, pp. 99-115.

Graef, J. and da Silva (2019) Statebuilding and Narrative. In Lemay-Hébert, N. (ed.), Handbook of Intervention and Statebuilding. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing Ltd, pp. 231-239.

da Silva, R. (2018) Narrative resources and political violence: the life stories of former clandestine militants in Portugal. In Nolas, S. M., Varvantakis, C. and Aruldoss, V. (eds.). Political Activism across the Life Course. London: Routledge, pp. 40-51.

Spalek, B., MacDonald, L., Limbada, Z., Silke, D. and da Silva, R. (2015) Counter-terrorism as conflict transformation. In Jarvis, L. and Lister M. (eds.) Critical perspectives on counter-terrorism. London: Routledge, pp. 77-90.