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Preventing Religio-Political Extremism Amongst Muslim Youth: A Study Exploring Police-community Partnership

Dr. Basia Spalek and Dr. Laura Zahra McDonald and Dr. Salwa El Awa, University of Birmingham

This project builds on a previous study undertaken collaboratively by the same research team, which examined police-community engagement and partnership in relation to counterterrorism (Spalek, El-Awa & McDonald, 2009).  The focus of the study being reported here is still very much upon police-community engagement and partnership in relation to counterterrorism, but with the added dimension of the inclusion of Muslim youth.The study set out here is a small-scale but in-depth study with 62 individuals who are closely involved or affected by the counter-terrorism agenda and the development of engagement between community members and police.  The methodology included semi-structured interviews with: One set of interviews (15 individuals, 8 in London and 7 in Birmingham) involved police officers, to ascertain how partnership approaches are being developed and what these partnership approaches involve.  Another set of interviews were carried out with Muslim community groups involved in such partnership approaches (14 individuals, 9 in London and 5 in Birmingham).  Another set of interviews (approximately 13 individuals, 6 in London and 7 in Birmingham) involved other stakeholders in partnership approaches involving police: local authority representatives, youth agency workers, policy makers.  We also accessed Muslim youth from diverse backgrounds, individually interviewing   9  Muslim young people and holding two focus group discussions with 6 young people in each, one in Birmingham the other in London.  

Resource published 2011