Telling it straight on countering violent online extremism

Millions of Euro are being pumped into producing online content aimed at preventing young people from being drawn into extremist activities via the Internet, especially via social media content consumption and interaction.

Orla Lehane, a PhD candidate at Dublin City University’s School of Law and Government, is utilising Grounded Theory methods to explore whether on not the increasing focus on so-called ‘online CVE’ (Countering Violent Extremism) is warranted:

How are the messages produced in this way perceived? Why are so many different actors so keen to become involved in work in this area? Are the messages working? How do we tell if they are working? Is it worth all the money being invested?

Lehane presented her research at DCU’s annual Tell it Straight competition, designed to encourage postgraduate research students to communicate their research and its potential impact to a non-specialist audience in a concise, dynamic and innovative way utilising current technology. Below is her presentation, which made the finals:

Lehane, whose PhD research is supervised by VOX-Pol Coordinator, Dr Maura Conway, has shared some of her findings at VOX-Pol’s Inaugural Conference in London (August 2014).

For upcoming presentations and more information on Lehane’s research, visit: or follow her Twitter: @orlita

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