Community tensions: Evidence-based approaches to understanding the interplay between hate crimes and radicalisation

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STFCCommunity tensions between different ethnic groups can result in low-level hate crimes that threaten to spill over into more damaging crime and extremist behaviour. At their most extreme, tensions caused and exacerbated by groups such as the English Defence League and Al-Muhajiroun can lead to full-blown street riots and even to the actions of violent extremists such as the 7/7 bombers and Anders Breivik.

While the motivations and actions of all these groups and individuals has been studied extensively, less research has been carried out into how their actions and narratives affect each other, drive wedges between communities and push susceptible individuals further towards the edges of acceptable and legal behaviour.

In addition, many of the initiatives and programmes that have sought to address the challenges, such as the Home Office's Prevent Strategy, have been hard to evaluate due to the lack of empirical data and/or defined metrics of success.

This workshop will seek to address the challenges facing researchers working on understanding and diffusing community tensions and explain how a more evidence-based empirical approach can help.

This is part of an ongoing series of events organised by RUSI and the STFC; the previous workshop on 6 February focused on Research Challenges in Antimicrobial Resistance, and the next, on Resilient Cities, will be held on 28 June 2013.

If you would like to submit an academic poster to be displayed at the event, please contact Jennifer Cole for further information at jenniferc@rusi.org

Sessions covered will include:

  • Use of data sets, computer modelling and data analysis in social science
  • Reporting hate crimes: understanding and analysing data collected by police and community groups
  • Mapping and modelling correlations between hate crimes, serious organised crime and violent extremism
  • Manipulation of mainstream media narratives by jihadist and counter-jihad supporters
  • Intervention strategies for young people: embedding community cohesion at an early age

To register please contact Emily Callaghan, Event Manager



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