IMPACT Europe at European Parliament Conference on ‘Antidotes to Islamist Radicalisation’

On 2 May, the IMPACT Europe project was presented at a European Parliament conference on ‘Antidotes to Islamist Extremism’. The conference was organised by Geoffrey Van Orden MEP, in partnership with the International Organisation to Preserve Human Rights (IOPHR), and with the support of the EEP, S&D, and ALDE groups.

The IMPACT Europe project was represented by Mr Jacopo Bellasio of RAND Europe, who was invited to share lessons learned and insights from IMPACT Europe as part of a panel discussion on the key underlying characteristics of the violent extremism and radicalisation phenomena. As part of these discussions, Mr Bellasio presented an overview of the IMPACT Europe project and of the contributions it has made to the P/CVE field, sharing findings related to evaluation challenges faced by P/CVE practitioners. The panel’s discussions were informed by a Keynote speech given by Mr Gilles de Kerchove, the EU Counter-Terrorism Coordinator. Mr Kerchove provided an overview of ongoing EU and member state efforts to prevent and counter violent extremism and radicalisation, and examined the challenges and threats that lie ahead.

Following this first session, further panel discussions focused on developing a shared, collective understanding of potential policies and interventions to tackle the issue of violent extremism and radicalisation. A second panel focussed on the ‘Symptoms’ of radicalisation and violent extremism, examining the process of radicalisation and the variety of factors that can influence it. A final panel discussed potential ‘Remedies’, or proposed strategies and next steps to address issues of integration, assimilation, identity, alienation and inclusive democratic participation.

Discussions over the course of the day were rich and engaging, and benefitted from a diversity of professional experiences and expertise, with speakers representing national and international policymaker, law enforcement and security, civil society, academic and research communities. For more information on the panellists and presentations, see the IOPHR webpage here.

[Image shared by Vincent Brassinne via Flickr; CC BY 2.0]