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Mixing Logics. Multiagency Approaches for Countering Violent Extremism

Authors Jennie Sivenbring
Robin Andersson
ISBN 978-91-519-3878-3
Publisher Segerstedtinstitutet Göteborgs universitet
Place of publication Göteborg
Publication year 2019
Published at Segerstedt Institute
Language en
Keywords violent extremism, policy, multiagency approaches, institutional logics, hybrid organizations
Subject categories Pedagogical Work, Social Work, Public Administration Studies


Acts of terror and increased activities in extremist milieus have stressed the need for developing policy to counter violent extremism (CVE) in the Nordic countries. In such policy, multiagency collaboration structures are given a central role in preventing the recruitment of youth to extremism. In this study of Nordic policies developed to counter extremism and prevent crime, we have mapped and compared the organization of multiagency collaboration the practices that are to be utilized and the legal frameworks that support these approaches. The findings reveal previously unknown discrepancies, similarities and differences between the Nordic countries that can help to inform a sometimes heated and polarized debate on how extremism is handled. By combining discourse analysis and organizational institutional theory, we provide a framework that conceptualizes multiagency collaboration structures as “hybrid spaces” where two different logics – a societal security logic and a social care logic – competes, mixes and co-exists. This framework gives some explanation to why multiagency collaboration sometimes evokes inter-organizational struggles and how such struggles are played out in work to counter violent extremism. This report summarizes the first part of the HEX-NA project (Handling Extremism - Nordic Approaches) and focuses on exploring different levels and types of policy on countering violent extremism in the Nordic countries (Iceland excluded). In the parts that follow, perceptions of among the public and public sector professionals will be explored and multiagency collaborative work in practice will be studied. HEX-NA is a three-year research project (2018-2021) funded by Nordforsk.

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