- Publication date
- 30 August 2022
- Directorate-General for Migration and Home Affairs
Working online has become increasingly important across almost all fields of work, especially since the outbreak of the COVID pandemic in 2020 when working from home became mandatory for many people. This is also true for work in preventing and countering of violent extremism (P/CVE), since radicalisation processes are increasingly taking place online. Types of P/CVE work that is being done online are, for example: early prevention, trend monitoring, individual interventions, and alternative or counter-messaging.
In the past year, multiple RAN Practitioners Working Groups have discussed online P/CVE work in their respective areas (e.g. RAN Local, RAN Families, Communities & Social Care, RAN Youth and Education, and RAN Rehabilitation). To converge the insights from those meetings and identify remaining challenges and the needs for practitioners in order to take the next step in their online work, the RAN Communications and Narratives (C&N) Working Group held a meeting on ‘Digital Frontrunners in P/CVE’ on 16 and 17 June 2022 in Riga, Latvia.
The participants presented their own online P/CVE practice or project as a “digital frontrunner”, and discussed in smaller groups what their current challenges, top tips and future needs are.
The key outcomes of the meeting are:
- There is a need to enhance collaboration and sustainable networking amongst online P/CVE workers, also foreseeing a possible role for the EU (platform, knowledge dissemination, funding, etc.).
- Important issues of privacy of P/CVE practitioners themselves as well as the target groups were raised.
- There is a need to better address mental health concerns of practitioners who are exposed to harmful content online on a day-to-day basis.
- Authorities and funders need to acknowledge the importance of online work P/CVE work and the practitioners doing this work, in order to pave the way for further development of online practices.
- The digital frontrunners are facing data access issues: on the one hand this is about dealing with information overload and information silos, and on the other hand barriers between practitioners and target groups (age/generational, technological) are making it difficult to keep up with trends and developments.
The remainder of this paper is structured slightly different than in other RAN Practitioners conclusion papers. The highlights and recommendations are combined. Each sub-heading consists of a major “need” in online P/CVE work that was identified by the participants. For each need, an explanation is given as to which challenges the need addresses, which top tips (or recommendations) already exist, and what ideas there are for the next steps in order to further address this need.