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When is Conventional Wisdom Wise? Testing the Assumptions Behind Preventing Violent Extremism

Jun 14, 2021

Prevention of violent extremism is more important now than it was before the COVID-19 pandemic. In order to prevent radicalization and extremist sentiments, a clear understanding of the causes of support for terrorism and violent extremism is needed. While local and regional studies exist, there had not been a global quantitative analysis investigating the most prominent factors associated with supporting violent extremism. 

UNDP has partnered with the Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO) to unpack existing quantitative global evidence. Using data supplied by the World Values Survey 2020, this study focuses on factors at the: (a) individual level (e.g., employment, age, and religion); (b) country level (e.g., role of government and society); and (c) emerging factors not previously examined (e.g., attitudes to domestic violence that may better predict violent extremist beliefs). 

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