Cynthia Miller-Idriss

Professor, American University

Cynthia Miller-Idriss is Professor in the School of Public Affairs and in the School of Education, and runs the Polarization and Extremism Research & Innovation Lab (PERIL) in the Center for University Excellence (CUE). Before her move into the School of Public Affairs in fall 2020, she was Professor of Education and Sociology at American University. In addition to her faculty role, Dr. Miller-Idriss is also Director of Strategy and Partnerships at the U.K.-based Centre for Analysis of the Radical Right and serves on the international advisory board of the Center for Research on Extremism (C-REX) in Oslo, Norway.

She has spent two decades researching radical and extreme youth culture in Europe and the U.S., most recently through a focus on how clothing, style and symbols act as a gateway into white supremacist extremism. Prior to her arrival at American University in August 2013, Dr. Miller-Idriss served on the faculty of New York University for a decade, and also taught previously at the University of Maryland and the University of Michigan. She holds a Ph.D. and M.A. in Sociology and a Masters in Public Policy from the University of Michigan, and a B.A. (magna cum laude) in Sociology and German Area Studies from Cornell University. She is a former AGI research fellow.

Recent Content


Episode 74: Antidemocratic Insurrections and Populist Uprising—Germany, Brazil, and the United States

In December 2022, German authorities arrested dozens of people tied to an alleged right-wing extremist plot to overthrow the German government. Among the accused are a member of a former …

Inoculating Against the Other Virus

Conspiracy Theories The COVID-19 pandemic continues to pose a wide array of challenges, ranging from maintaining and increasing vaccination rates, to promoting digestible information to educate the public about the …

Episode 38: Lessons for Dealing with Right-Wing Extremism in the United States and Germany

Right-wing extremism has been on the rise around the world. The January 6, 2021 insurrection that attached the U.S. capital and the August 2020 protest in Berlin which breached the …