The strength of Weak Terrorist Ties

Jonathan Kennedy, Gabriel Weimann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The current age of technology, mass communication, and globalization makes networks analysis an especially useful tool for understanding cell-based terrorism. Some concepts from traditional networks analysis may be especially relevant. The Strength of Weak Ties hypothesis (SWT) is particularly promising and will be used here to demonstrate the usability of traditional networks analysis for studying modern terrorism. The findings suggest that the strength of weak terrorist ties may improve Al Qaeda's operational capabilities despite the group's decentralization following the U.S.-led military campaign in Afghanistan beginning in 2001.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)201-212
Number of pages12
JournalTerrorism and Political Violence
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2011


  • Al Qaeda
  • Facebook
  • Internet
  • Social networks
  • Terrorism
  • Terrorist communication
  • Weak ties

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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