Today, the Youth Empowerment and Innovation Project (YEIP) releases new data that was collected through youth-led research that was carried out by 74 young people in the UK, Greece, Cyprus, Italy, Portugal, Sweden and Romania with 400 research participants.

Over two years, the Erasmus+ funded project coordinated by the IARS International Institute under the leadership of Professor Theo Gavrielides trained local teams of young people who conducted original fieldwork in schools, youth prisons, universities, migrant centres and online.

The new evidence in the discourse of violent youth radicalisation show a link between discrimination and the underlying pull and push factors that lead to extreme ideologies. Although there are differences in the shapes and forms that the phenomenon takes in the project countries and across Europe, there is a common thread characterising the paths to violent radicalisation. The project argues that if this thread is addressed at an EU policy level, then Europe stands a better chance in addressing the rising nationalism and extremism. This thread is very much attached to how young people at risk of violent radicalisation are “managed” by the existing justice system as “risks”. This creates further alienation and division, while recidivism rates and this new research point out that the current approach has failed.

Dr. Theo Gavrielides, YEIP Coordinator said: “We cannot continue investing our national and European resources on a failed paradigm, and this new evidence from young Europeans simply supports the need for a new direction”.

Ama Yarboi, from the project’s Youth Advisory Board said: “Now is our time as young people to rise up and accept the responsibilities we have inherited from older generations. It is so inspiring to see the youth lead these policy intervention models. Our future is in our own hands and it seems like we have a good grasp on how we want to shape it”.

YEIP will launch its final findings on the 29th January 2020 at an international conference in London. Registration is now open with keynote speakers including the European Commission, public authorities from the participating countries as well as Neil Coyle MP, shadow justice secretary Diane Abbott and prominent academics.

Manuela Tagliani, YEIP young researcher from the Italian partner Anziani e non solo, commented:
“A common need of young people that our research established is to feel accepted, appreciated and listened
to by adults. This topic is an important starting point for the creation of the YEIP prevention model”.

Download the executive summary