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Women and counter-radicalisation projects

Seeing women only as mothers and victims is harmful to effective counter-radicalisation work, according to a new report by the University of Warwick’s Dr Jennifer Philippa Eggert, with the Berghof Foundation, a non-profit organisation.

Women are often excluded from participation in counter-radicalisation projects despite many in the field agreeing that an inclusive approach, recognising women as practitioners, activists and leaders in their own right rather than stereotyping them as wives, mothers and victims, is vital to long-term success.

In a series of interviews and a workshop Dr Jennifer Philippa Eggert, a member of Warwick’s Department for Politics and International Studies, and an Early Career Fellow at the Institute of Advanced Study, explored the ways that grassroots bodies in Germany, the UK and Lebanon have integrated women into their work, and developed a set of best practice recommendations.

Dr Eggert said: “In some counter-radicalisation programmes, there is a lot of focus on women’s roles as mothers, and we came to the conclusion that this is quite problematic, because women are not just mothers. They are members of society in a lot of different roles: they are leaders, they are professionals, and yes, they are also mothers, but not just mothers.”

The paper, The Roles of Women in Counter-Radicalisation and Disengagement (CRaD) Processes – Best Practices and Lessons Learned from Europe and the Arab World is available at


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