The Challenges of Researching Extremism Today

Why is it so difficult to do conclusive research on extremism? How is studying far-right extremism different from Islamist and other types of extremism? What are the ethical dilemmas when working with young people in milieus that are frequently targeted by stereotypes and racism? And what are the dangers researchers face when conducting fieldwork?

This workshop - organised under the auspices of the H2020 DRIVE project - brings together scholars, practitioners, professionals, and community groups who work on understanding radicalisation to address these questions. The DRIVE project specifically focuses on the need to understand the significance of social exclusion in radicalisation, which necessitates carrying out research on hard-to-reach communities and involves asking complex and sensitive questions. In order to ensure that quality data can be generated, free from bias and prejudice, we need to remain understanding of the sensitivities and at the same time introduce initiatives that help generate in-depth, viable, and penetrating insight.

This workshop, open and free to all, explores the challenges of doing research on extremism presented by some of the leading scholars in the field in Europe.

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11.00-11.05 Tahir Abbas (Leiden University): Welcome and introduction to DRIVE project
11.05-11.15 Catherine Thorleifsson (University of Oslo): DRIVE’s approach to balancing the online and offline
11.15-11.30 Joel Busher (Coventry University): Key challenges, opportunities, and dilemmas in researching the far-right
11.30-11.45 Jennifer Philippa Eggert (University of Warwick): Intersectional approaches to gender-inclusive research on sensitive topics'
11.45-12.00  Chris Allen (University of Leicester):  The risks of participant observation and mitigating the problematisation of Muslim communities
12.00-12.30 Q&A chaired by Anouk de Koning (Leiden University)

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Event details

June 22, 2021
11.00 - 12.30 CEST
Location: Online via Zoom
Organised by: DRIVE
Visit the event website
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