Miss Joan McDappa

Research project: Exploring the Effectiveness of the Government's Counter-terrorism Strategy to Fight Boko Haram in Nigeria.


In the last decade, Nigeria has had to deal with the menace of Boko Haram, a small 'voiceless' and largely unknown group which has now transformed into a deadly terrorist group with links to Al-Qaeda. Boko Haram has continued to gain more momentum, attracting global attention to itself. As expected, Nigeria's government has responded with many counter-campaigns that often suggest success at long last. Unfortunately, the outcome is almost always cut short by the resurrection of the same group; but worse still, in a much deadlier version of itself.

The continuing pattern highlighted above and the expansion of Boko Haram into a regional terrorist organization raise questions on the effectiveness of these many campaigns launched by Nigeria's government against the group. This research seeks to explore the effects of Nigeria's strategies to address the issue of terrorism in her country. 

  • Research degree: PhD
  • Title of project: Exploring the Effectiveness of the Government's Counter-terrorism Strategy to Fight Boko Haram in Nigeria.
  • Research supervisor: Dr Peter Finn
  • Other research supervisor: Dr Atsuko Ichijo


Having gained an undergraduate degree in International Relations; and a Master degree in Terrorism Studies, I have developed a successful career in strategy development, security analysis, risk management, conflict resolution, advocacy and research. My career journey has seen me work across profit and nonprofit organizations.

Resulting from my deep passion for promoting development in Africa, I have (in some instances) collaborated and executed impact-based projects, usually targeted at women, youths and children in system-created disadvantaged situations. These projects are very clearly related to my area of research interest and are often outcomes of my research work.

Fundamental to my decision to fully pursue a career in research is my vision to drive effective development in the African region. I hope that through this research, the government, not just in Nigeria but the entire African region (and even the world), would begin to make better-informed counter-terrorism decisions and strategies.

Areas of research interest

  • Politics and Governance in Africa
  • Corruption and Insecurity
  • Counter-terrorism
  • Terrorism
  • Media and Nation-building


  • MSc in Terrorism Studies, University of East London
  • BSc in International Relations, Covenant University