Project: Global Network on Gender and Responding to Violent Extremism (GARVE)

  • Ahmed, Fatuma (Principal Investigator)
  • Aroussi, Sahla (Co-Investigator)
  • Skaper, Pauline (Project Manager)

    Project: Research

    Project Details


    Project Team: Dr Fatuma Ahmed (Director, United States International University of Africa, Kenya); Dr Sahla Aroussi (Co-director, Coventry University); Pauline Skaper (network manager, Rift Valley Institute, Nairobi).

    Layman's description

    This project will develop an open, critical and interdisciplinary network on Gender and Responding to Violent Extremism. ‘Violent extremism’ is a complex phenomenon involving both men and women through diverse personal, ideological, structural and context specific drivers. One dimension of this complexity is that there is no agreed definition on violent extremism (nor similarly is there for ‘terrorism’ or ‘radicalisation’), which makes theorising and designing effective interventions to tackle it extremely difficult. Violent extremism tends to be approached from a gender essentialist perspective, with men assumed to be perpetrators and women as victims, ‘mothers’ and ‘wives’ of recruits or potential recruits. In recent years, the role of women in the prevention of violent extremism and within extremist networks such as Al-Shabaab, the ‘Islamic State’ and the English Defence League has come to the spotlight particularly following the adoption of the United Nations Security Council resolutions following the adoption of 2242 on Women, Peace and Security in 2015. Yet, research and scholarship in this area remains new and a deeper engagement with gender and the role of norms around masculinities and femininities in violent extremism is still limited in scholarship and policies around terrorism and violent extremism. Hence, our Global Network on Gender and Responding to Violent Extremism (GARVE) is both timely and relevant.
    Our network is led by academics in collaboration with the Rift Valley Institute. The network will bridge the academic – policymaker - practitioner divides by bringing together physically and virtually, academics, practitioners, policymakers, local organisations and members of local communities from across the globe to discuss, exchange knowledge and expertise, theorise, identify research gaps and highlight best practices and policy failures. The network aims to attract members from diverse disciplines, to promote innovative and critical thinking on violent extremism from a gender perspective and to facilitate shared learning.
    If you are interested in learning more about activities or in joining our network please get in touch with Pauline Skaper at ; Dr Sahla Aroussi at
    Effective start/end date1/09/191/09/21

    Collaborative partners

    • Coventry University
    • United States International University of Africa (lead)
    • Rift Valley Institute


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