Counterradicalization Interventions. A Review of the Evidence

Wolfowicz, Michael , Weisburd, David & Badi Hasisi | 2022

Research report 2022/1, 70 p.

Counter-radicalization has become part and parcel of the counter-terrorism strategies of virtually every western nation. Most counter-radicalization efforts build on the assumption that targeting specific risk and protective factors can reduce the prevalence of radicalization among the general population and thereby reduce the risk of terrorism. Yet, despite the rapid diffusion of counter-radicalization interventions and the significant investments that democratic countries have made in them, few rigorous evaluations have been carried out to guide existing practice. Even with policies, practices, and programs in place for close to two decades, it remains unknown whether they are at all effective.

This study reviews counter-radicalization strategies and interventions funded by governments or carried out under their auspices. They map out the risk and protective factors specified and identify the degree to which they are evidence-based.

The review finds some promising results, but it also indicates that many interventions target factors with minimal relationships with radicalization.

The report is available in a print version for 100 SEK including postage within Sweden. If you are interested, let us know at [email protected]

This report is part of the project Violent threats and internal security. Canadian-Swedish bilateral research collaboration on organized violent threats (2019-13780) financed by The Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency (MSB).

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Research report 2022/1, 70 p.

Counter-radicalization has become part and parcel of the counter-terrorism strategies of virtually every western nation. Most counter-radicalization efforts build on the assumption that targeting specific risk and protective factors can reduce the prevalence of radicalization among the general population and thereby reduce the risk of terrorism. Yet, despite the rapid diffusion of counter-radicalization interventions and the significant investments that democratic countries have made in them, few rigorous evaluations have been carried out to guide existing practice. Even with policies, practices, and programs in place for close to two decades, it remains unknown whether they are at all effective.

This study reviews counter-radicalization strategies and interventions funded by governments or carried out under their auspices. They map out the risk and protective factors specified and identify the degree to which they are evidence-based.

The review finds some promising results, but it also indicates that many interventions target factors with minimal relationships with radicalization.

The report is available in a print version for 100 SEK including postage within Sweden. If you are interested, let us know at [email protected]

This report is part of the project Violent threats and internal security. Canadian-Swedish bilateral research collaboration on organized violent threats (2019-13780) financed by The Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency (MSB).