Lydia Khalil

Project Director, Digital Threats to Democracy Project; Research Fellow, Transnational Challenges
Areas of expertise

Terrorism and violent extremism; digital technology; disinformation; authoritarianism; national security; emergency management and countering violent extremism; crisis and natural disasters; radicalisation; counterterrorism; policy; Middle East; US national security

Lydia Khalil
Biography
Publications
News and media

Lydia Khalil is a Research Fellow on Transnational Challenges at the Lowy Institute. She manages the Digital Threats to Democracy Project.

Lydia has spent her career focusing on the intersection between governance, technology and security. She has a broad range of policy, research and private sector experience and has a professional background in international relations, national security and strategic intelligence analysis, with a particular focus on terrorism and other forms of political violence.

Lydia is also an Senior Research Fellow at Deakin University’s Alfred Deakin Institute, where she is the co-convener of the Addressing Violent Extremism and Radicalisation to Terrorism (AVERT) Research Network. Lydia is a research member of the Centre for Resilient and Inclusive Societies (CRIS) where she leads the Crisis Points project on the intersection of disasters, extremism and disinformation. She serves as an editorial board member of the academic journal Studies in Conflict & Terrorism.

Lydia has held previous appointments as an international affairs fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York, the Australian Strategic Policy Institute and Macquarie University. She has previously served as an adviser with the US Department of Defense and as a senior policy and intelligence adviser to the Boston Police Department. She has also worked as a senior counter-terrorism and intelligence analyst for the New York Police Department.

Lydia is a frequent media commentator and has published widely in both popular and academic publications on her areas of expertise. She holds a BA in International Relations from Boston College and a Master’s in International Security from Georgetown University.

She is the author of the book Rise of the Extreme Right: The New Global Extremism and the Threat to Democracy (Penguin, 2022).

The war in Gaza has not destroyed normalisation … for now
The war in Gaza has not destroyed normalisation … for now
Despite deepening hostilities, common strategic interests still bind Israel and most of the Arab states.
Artificial Intelligence: The regulatory race to ensure a democratic future
Artificial Intelligence: The regulatory race to ensure a democratic future
Authoritarian governments have their own designs for AI in this new arena for strategic rivalry.
Israel–Palestine conflict once more the overriding issue of regional security
Israel–Palestine conflict once more the overriding issue of regional security
The Palestinian cause remained, but for the region had become a second or third-order issue among diplomatic normalisation and other pressing challenges.
The Fix: A realist take(s) on ChatGPT
The Fix: A realist take(s) on ChatGPT
Your weekly Interpreter feature to rake up resources and reads you might otherwise miss.
How can we regulate AI? Let’s just ask it
How can we regulate AI? Let’s just ask it
Even leading developers want to pause the revolution underway. So what insights does the machine offer on itself?
Anti-Government Extremism in Australia: Understanding the Australian Anti-Lockdown Freedom Movement as a Complex Anti-Government Social Movement
Journal Articles
Anti-Government Extremism in Australia: Understanding the Australian Anti-Lockdown Freedom Movement as a Complex Anti-Government Social Movement
Journal article by Lydia Khalil and Joshua Roose for Perspectives on Terrorism, an initiative of the International Centre for Counter-Terrorism
Banning the Nazi salute opens a Pandora’s box
Commentary
Banning the Nazi salute opens a Pandora’s box
Originally published in The Age.
Ideology is back, and it’s critical for understanding AUKUS v China
Commentary
Ideology is back, and it’s critical for understanding AUKUS v China
Originally published in the Sydney Morning Herald.
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