D3.1 Country Report | April 2021
Authors: Ozge Ozduzen1, Nelli Ferenczi1, Isabel Holmes1, Nachita Rosun1, Kayne Liu2, Shirin Alsayednoor2
1Brunel University London
2Glasgow Caledonian University
This report addresses contemporary stakeholders, structures, channels, and platforms of radicalisation and de-radicalisation in the UK, including offline and online spaces. It situates contemporary radicalisation and de-radicalisation in the UK within historical contexts of party politics and the British empire. The primary focus of this report is to analyse the contextual background, structure, and channels of radicalisation and de-radicalisation of right-wing extremism. This report frames the interactional process of the perceptions of radicalisation by the state and political elite and the general public’s conceptualisations of what constitutes political violence and threat. Importantly, the report points out state-led processes which delineate group boundaries and establish idealised British values and identities (e.g. the Brexit vote), which serve to locate the causes of radicalisation within specific communities, and processes which institutionalise Islamophobia and racial hierarchies that engender right-wing ideologies. The report also shows how social media platforms such as TikTok provide a fertile and easy-to-access use and wider visibility for radicalised groups and individuals in order to organise and recruit individuals. The report also critically engages with the current programmes and initiatives by the Conservative government in the direction of de-radicalisation, especially the Prevent programme. Whilst detecting the most crucial stakeholders and channels of radicalisation including state-led and online platforms of radicalisation, the report identifies the most important tools of de-radicalisation in the UK by exemplifying the roles played by NGOs, recent social and political movements, and unions. On the other hand, this report embraces a historical and societal perspective on online platforms and argues that rather than keeping online platforms or users responsible for radicalisation, larger policy and social change are necessary, in order to effectively address radicalisation structures and pathways in the UK.