AR Profile

Amir Rostami

Amir Rostami holds a Ph.D. in sociology from Stockholm University and is currently associate professor and senior lecturer in criminology at the University of Gävle. Rostami is also a research fellow at the Institute for Futures Studies in Stockholm. Rostami’s main research interest is the social organizing dimensions of criminal phenomena such as organized crime and violent extremism. He has conducted extensive research on criminal organizing in Sweden. Rostami is currently PI for the Canadian-Swedish research collaboration on organized violent threats partly financed by the Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency (MSB). Further he has been involved in several research projects on violent extremism and organized crime such as “The nexus between organized crime and violent extremism” and “Digital radicalization and analogue extremism? A comparative analysis of violent extremism in the takfiri and extreme-right movements.” Rostami has also served as project manager for a three-year European Union (EU) grant to study and develop new methods in preventing criminal gangs, a collaboration between Swedish Police in Stockholm, the Metropolitan Police / New Scotland Yard in London, Norwegian Police in Oslo, and the Danish National Police. Rostami holds the rank of Police Superintendent at the Swedish Police and has also served as senior advisor to the Swedish National coordinator to safeguarding democracy against violent extremism. Rostami is a seated member of the IACP Homeland Security Committee.

Scientific articles in peer-review journals

  • Carlsson, C., Rostami, A., Mondani, H., Sturup, J., Sarnecki, J., & Edling, C. (2019). A Life-Course Analysis of Engagement in Violent Extremist Groups. The British Journal of Criminology.
  • Sturup, J., Gerell, M., & Rostami, A. (2018). Explosive violence: A near-repeat study of hand grenade detonations and shootings in urban Sweden. European Journal of Criminology.
  • Sturup, J., Rostami, A., Gerell, M., & Sandholm, A. (2018). Near-repeat shootings in contemporary Sweden 2011 to 2015. Security Journal, 31, 73–92.
  • Rostami, A., Sturup, J., Mondani, H., Thevselius, P., Sarnecki, J., & Edling, C. (2018). The Swedish Mujahideen: An exploratory study of 41 Swedish foreign fighters deceased in Iraq and Syria. Studies in Conflict & Terrorism.
  • Sturup, J., Rostami, A., Mondani, H., Gerell, M., Sarnecki, J., & Edling, C. (2018). Increased Gun Violence Among Young Males in Sweden: a Descriptive National Survey and International Comparison. European Journal on Criminal Policy and Research.
  • Rostami, A. (2017). Street-gang violence in Sweden is a growing concern. Sociologisk Forskning, 54, 365–368.
  • Rostami, A., Mondani, H., Liljeros, F., & Edling, C. (2017). Criminal organizing applying the theory of partial organization to four cases of organized crime. Trends in Organized Crime. doi:10.1007/s12117-017-9315-6
  • Rostami, A., & Mondani, H. (2017). Organizing on two wheels: Uncovering the organizational patterns of Hells Angels in Sweden. Trends in Organized Crime.
  •  Rostami, A. & Mondani, H. (2015). “The Complexity of Crime Network Data: A Case Study of Its Consequences for Crime Control and the Study of Networks”. PLoS ONE 10(3): e0119309
  • Rostami, A., Melde, C., & Holgerssson, S. (2014). “The myth of success: the emergence and maintenance of a specialized gang unit in Stockholm, Sweden.” The International Journal of Comparative and Applied Criminal Justice, 39(3):199-217.
  • Rostami, A., & F. Leinfelt,. &  S, Holgersson. (2012). ”An Exploratory Analysis of Swedish Street Gangs: Applying the Maxson and Klein Typology to a Swedish Gang Dataset.” Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice 28(4): 426-445.
  • Rostami, A., & F. Leinfelt,. D, Brotherton. (2012). ”Understanding Gang Leaders: Characteristics and Driving Forces of Street Gang Leaders in Sweden.” Free Inquiry in Creative Sociology 40(2):1–20.


  • Rostami, A. (2016) Criminal organizing – Studies in the sociology of organized crime (PhD thesis, defense 3 June 2016).
  • Rostami, A. (2013). Tusen fiender – en studie om de svenska gatugängen och dess ledare. Linnaeus University Studies in Policing och Institutionen för socialt arbete. Fil lic thesis. Växjö: Linnéuniversitetet.

Book Chapters

  • Rostami, A. (2020). De överlappande hoten: Organiserad brottslighet och våldsbejakande extremism och dess konsekvenser för det polisiära arbetet. In G. Larsson & S. Sorgenfrei (Eds.), Migration, religion och polisiärt arbete. Studentlitteratur.
  • Rostami, A. (2019). Organiserad brottslighet och våldsbejakande extremism som antagonistiska hot. In Häggström & Brun (Eds). Antagonistiska hot och dess påverkan på lokalsamhället. Försvarshögskolan.
  • Ahrne, G., & Rostami, A. (2019). How is ‘Organized Crime’ Organized? In G. Ahrne & N. Brunsson (Eds.), Organization outside Organizations edited by Göran Ahrne. Cambridge Core.
  • Gunnarson, C., & Rostami, A. (2019). Sweden: organised crime, politics and civil society. In F. Allum & S. Gilmour (Eds.), Handbook of Organised Crime and Politics (pp. 35–49).
  • Irwin-Rogers, K., Decker, S. H., Rostami, A., Stephenson, S., & Van Hellemont, E. (2019). European street gangs and urban violence. In I. Vojnovic, A. L. Pearson, G. Asiki, G. DeVerteuil, & A. Allen (Eds.), Handbook of Global Urban Health (1st Edition). Routledge.
  • Sturup, J and Rostami, A. (2017). Organiserad antagnosim (2017) In C. Edling & A. Rostami (Eds.), Våldsbejakande extremism: En forskningsöversikt. SOU 2017:67
  • Rostami, A. (2016). ”Våldets betydelse för organisering av kriminella gäng.” In C. Edling & A. Rostami (Eds.), Våldets sociala dimension: Individ, relation, organisationLund: Studentlitteratur.
  • Rostami, A. (2016). “Policing gangs and organized crime – Experiences from conceptual confusion and its consequences from two Swedish case studies”. In C.L. Maxson & F-A Esbensen (Eds) Gang Transitions and Transformations in an International Context. New York: Springer.
  • Leinfelt, F., & Rostami, A. (2012). The PANTHER Gang model: Preventive Analysis about Network Targets for Holistic Enforcement Response. In F. Leinfelt & A. Rostami (Eds.), The Stockholm gang model: PANTHER: Stockholm Gang Intervention and Prevention Project. Stockholm: Polismyndigheten i Stockholms län (Stockholm County Police).
  • Rostami, A., & Leinfelt, F. (2012). The History of Swedish Gangs. In F. Leinfelt & A. Rostami (Eds.), The Stockholm gang model: PANTHER: Stockholm Gang Intervention and Prevention Project. Polismyndigheten i Stockholms län.
  • Rostami, A. & F. Leinfelt (2011). ”The Stockholm Gang Intervention and Prevention  Project: Introducing a Holistic Approach to Gang Enforcement.” In F.-A. Esbensen and C. L. Maxson (Eds.) Youth Gangs in International Perspective: Tales from the Eurogang Program of Research. New York: Springer.

Edited Books

  • SOU 2017:67. Våldsbejakande extremism: En forskarantologi. Stockholm: Regeringskansliet.
  • Edling, C., & Rostami, A. (Eds.). (2016). Våldets sociala dimension: Individ, relation, organisationLund: Studentlitteratur.
  • Leinfelt, F., & Rostami, A. (Eds.). (2012). The Stockholm gang model PANTHER: Stockholm Gang Intervention & Prevention Project, 2009-2012. Stockholm: Polismyndigheten i Stockholms län (Stockholm County Police).

Other Publications (a selection)

  • Rostami, A. (2019). Organiserad antagonism: Jihadism och organiserad brottslighet som sociala risker. Slutrapport. Stockholm. Myndigheten för samhällsksydd och beredskap.
  • Rostami, A., Mondani, H., Carlsson, C., Sturup, J., Sarnecki, J., & Edling, C. (2018). Våldsbejakande extremism och organiserad brottslighet i Sverige (No. 2018/4; p. 104). Stockholm: Institutet för Framtidsstudier.

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