Dr. Shuki Cohen is Director of the Center on Terrorism at the City University of New York’s John Jay College of Criminal Justice in Manhattan. He is also an Associate Professor in the Psychology Department at John Jay College and a member of CUNY’s Graduate Center faculty in both Criminal Justice and Clinical Psychology.
Dr. Cohen obtained his BSc in Biophysical Chemistry (Cum Laude) and MSc in Brain Research from the Weizmann Institute of Science, Israel. After working as a neuroscientist at the University of California, Berkeley he received his PhD in clinical psychology from New York University. He completed his clinical internship at Bellevue and Gouverneur hospitals in New York City, followed by a 2-year postdoctoral fellowship at Yale Medical School Department of Psychiatry.
Integrating his clinical and neuroscience backgrounds, Dr. Cohen’s lab tracks political polarization and violent radicalization by considering the language and motivations of extremists, ideologues and sympathizers. Dr. Cohen’s research utilizes both traditional psycholinguistic methods and (proprietary) computerized algorithms to identify language patterns that are outside the conscious awareness and control of extremists. Dr. Cohen is proficient in 6 languages and his studies involve computer programs and focus groups in the propaganda’s original language. The patterns that this line of research uncovers are then used to identify vulnerabilities and fault-lines for counter-messaging and counter-terrorism.