Despite international efforts to contain, fight and delegitimise it, the self-proclaimed Islamic State - a terrorist jihadist entity also known for its previous designations ISIL/ISIS or DAESH - not only has consolidated characteristics as a de facto State, but has also expanded far beyond Syria and Iraq. In fact, the IS has become one of the most disturbing threats to international security in recent years, rivalling with al-Qaeda (AQ) as the leader of global jihadism. How did this phenomenon emerge and evolve? How can we characterise the IS in terms of its goals, ideology, structure, governance, military and financial capabilities, propaganda, and recruitment procedures? Which groups have sided with the IS around the world? What strategies and legislation have been developed to contain and fight the IS? What are the dilemmas involving jihadist Internet use, and what is the balance between security and freedom? And what is the meaning of the IS s rise for our societies and also of so many actors involved in fighting it to the regional geopolitical chessboard? These are some of the questions addressed in this book through nine essays written by a transnational team of some of the most prominent experts from Portugal, Italy and Turkey. So as to ensure a variety of topics related to this new global jihadist phenomenon, the book has relatively short and concise chapters, albeit containing in-depth and well-informed views from eight scholars and two journalists.