A. Honari, MSc

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faculteit der sociale wetensch ( afdeling communicatiewetenschap )
PhD Candidate


  • Protests, Social Movements, Repression, Collective Actions
  • The internet and online protest participations, data Mining and Iranian Web
  • Social movements in Iran (in particular the Iranian Green Movement), electoral participation in 2013 presidential elections.

Current Research

Iran’s Green Movement between two elections (2009-2013): The dynamics of off- and online movement participation under severe repression
There is a long-standing debate in the academic scholarship on contentious politics about the impact of state repression on mobilization. Several scholars have concluded that repression deters individuals from engaging in protest behaviour, whereas others found that it also enhances participation in collective action. Furthermore, it has also been argued that it generally has a curvilinear effect, no effect at all, or leads to alternative pathways to express political discontent. This study aims to provide more insight into how repression affects the evolution of the Iranian Green Movement (IGM) and theoretically elaborates and empirically investigates this last mentioned option.
For the purpose of this study, a unique data from three waves of online surveys before and after 2013 Iran’s presidential election is gathered and used. (to see details follow the link)
This study revisited the relationship between repression and movement participation, by taking into account two crucial, but neglected, factors: the role of 1) online activism (as a tactic) in the survival of social movements, and 2) electoral politics in dealing with sustained severe repression. 

Understanding social and political concerns through the lens of online social networks 
The Internet and its natively digital objects (such as posts, links, tags, etc.) are increasingly used by researchers as a source to understand social phenomena (Rogers, 2009). In particular the growth of the use of online social networks such as Facebook and Twitter increasingly offer an alternative venue for observing and conducting studies on citizens’ interests, behaviors, and opinions. This project’s main aim is to develop a tool for extracting data from the world wide web- Iranian online social networks in particular- and apply web mining in sociological research.


OnderzoeksLab/Social Network Analysis (for Master’s program at the faculty of social sciences at VU University Amsterdam).
AnalyseLab/Social Network Analysis (for minor in ‘Networks in Information Society’ at VU University Amsterdam). (with M. T. Jacobs)


Honari, A., van Stekelenburg, J. and Klandermans, B. (2014). Socio-Political Participation in Iran: 2013 Election Data set. Retrieved from http://IranPolPartResearch.org.
Honari, A. (2013). From virtual to tangible social movements in Iran. In P. Aarts, & F. Cavatorta, Civil society in Syria and Iran: Activism in authoritarian Contexts (pp. 143-167). CO: Lynne Rienner.