Preventing Violent Extremism through Education
Challenges, policies and practices - 5. Georg Arnhold International Summer School
Wendy Anne Kopisch and Katharina Baier
Program coordinators Georg-Arnhold-Program/Publications and International Cooperation
The Georg Eckert Institute for International Textbook Research (GEI) is pleased to announce the fifth Georg Arnhold International Summer School, which will take place in Braunschweig, Germany, from 23 to 27 July 2018.
This year’s Summer School will explore the theme of preventing violent extremism through education (PVE-E). It will focus on curricula and curriculum reform, educational media, formal and non-formal educational activities, and diverse stakeholders such as teachers, NGOs, governments and international organizations in the context of PVE-E policies, practices and challenges. Particular emphasis will be placed on sharing expertise of good practices around the world, offering a critical analysis of problematic and controversial approaches, and identifying potential ways of overcoming obstacles.
Recent decades have seen an increase of violent extremism around the world. Advocating or using violence to achieve radical social, economic, religious or political objectives is a major threat to people’s lives, their security and safety as well as to the coherence and stability of societies as a whole. Violent extremism acts against the fundamental principles of human rights and peace and has been a cause of forced migration as people flee areas that have fallen under the control of violent extremist groups. In recent years, resources have increasingly focused on preventing violent extremism as a much more effective approach than countering or mitigating its effects. There is a wider appreciation that violent extremism is not exclusive to any country or region, but a transnational phenomenon that requires global action. There is also international recognition of the importance of education as a tool to prevent violent extremism.
A significant step that has marked the global acceptance of PVE was the launch, in December 2015, of the UN Secretary-General’s ‘Plan of Action to Prevent Violent Extremism’. The plan emphasized the need to engage in educational measures aimed at preventing violent extremism, also known as PVE-E (Preventing Violent Extremism through Education). In particular, UNESCO’s actions have been rapidly expanding over the past two years, not just with formal board decisions to promote PVE-E (e.g. UNESCO Executive Board Decision 197EX/46), but also global conferences and the creation of policy guides for teachers, stakeholders and the creation of educational resources. These efforts have taken place within the framework of Agenda 2030 and in particular Target 4.7 of Sustainable Development Goal 4 on Education. Numerous state and non-state actors, community organizations, researchers and practitioners have also been involved with PVE-E.
However, many issues and questions remain insufficiently explored. For example, what are the drivers of violent extremism when it comes to young people? What are the existing PVE-E policies or pedagogies and how can they be evaluated? What is the role of teachers in PVE-E? How are various stakeholders involved in PVE-E programs and what should their role be? Which examples of good and bad practices do we have so far? How does PVE-E differ when it comes to different forms of violent extremism, be it right-wing, left-wing or religious extremism? What should the role of digital initiatives be when it comes to PVE-E? What is the relationship between PVE-E, Global Citizenship Education, Peace Education and Education for Sustainable Development?
The GEI thus invites original contributions that draw upon diverse contexts, theories and methods to shed light on questions pertaining to, but not restricted to, the following four themes:
1) Drivers of violent extremism in youth
2) PVE-E policies, pedagogies and educational material
3) Teacher training and teaching practices in PVE-E
4) Stakeholders in PVE-E (state/non-state/international actors)
When applying, participants are requested to indicate which thematic issue they consider their work to be most relevant to.
The week-long summer school will bring together early-career scholars, senior researchers, and practitioners in the field of PVE-E from around the world. It will provide an interdisciplinary and international forum that will allow participants to debate and critically reflect upon key research questions, methods, findings, and their implications. The academic program will offer the participants to widen their research perspectives and improve their methodological competencies.
HOW TO APPLY
The Summer School primarily welcomes applications from doctoral candidates and post-doctoral scholars from the humanities and social sciences, particularly education, history, political sciences, sociology, law, anthropology, and psychology. Practitioners working for international organizations and NGOs in the relevant fields are also welcome to apply. Applications from students enrolled in a Master’s program and recent graduates with a Master’s degree will be considered in exceptional cases.
The GEI invites suitable applicants to submit abstracts of their presentations of no more than two pages together with a CV, a list of publications (if applicable), and the completed application form, which can be downloaded at the sidebar.
Submissions should be made electronically. All documents must be in PDF format, and the total file size may not exceed 3 MB (file name: Last name, First name_Arnhold Summer School 2018). Please send applications to firstname.lastname@example.org, with the subject line “Arnhold Summer School 2018.”
The deadline for completed applications is March 15, 2018. Successful applicants will be notified by April 9, 2018. Drafts of the respective presentations should be ready for circulation amongst the participants by July 9, 2018.
The GEI plans to publish the proceedings of the Summer School and will ask participants and experts to submit articles for publication based on their presentations.
The working language of the Summer School will be English. No registration fees apply. Accommodation and meals will be provided for all participants, and economy-class travel expenses will be reimbursed.