The paper concerns measurements of runaway electrons (REs) which are generated during discharges in tokamaks. The control of REs is an important task in experimental studies within the ITER-physics program. The NCBJ team proposed to study REs by means of Cherenkov-type detectors several years ago. The Cherenkov radiation, induced by REs in appropriate radiators, makes it possible to identify fast electron beams and to determine their spatial- and temporal-characteristics. The results of recent experimental studies of REs, performed in two tokamaks - COMPASS in Prague and FTU in Frascati, are summarized and discussed in this paper. Examples of the electron-induced signals, as recorded at different experimental conditions and scenarios, are presented. Measurements performed with a three-channel Cherenkov-probe in COMPASS showed that the first fast electron peaks can be observed already during the current ramp-up phase. A strong dependence of RE-signals on the radial position of the Cherenkov probe was observed. The most distinct electron peaks were recorded during the plasma disruption. The Cherenkov signals confirmed the appearance of post-disruptive RE beams in circular-plasma discharges with massive Ar-puffing. During experiments at FTU a clear correlation between the Cherenkov detector signals and the rotation of magnetic islands was identified. © Published under licence by IOP Publishing Ltd.