The prevention of the youth radicalisation – The Portuguese context

The present study, developed in the framework of the project YEIP (Youth Empowerment Innovation Project), intends to give an overview, about policies, programmes, and stakeholders related to the prevention of youth radicalization in Portugal. This report constitutes the first step of this ambitious 36-month project, involving organizations from seven countries (Cyprus, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Romania, Sweden and UK), which intends to produce an innovative model to tackle youth radicalization, based on the positive psychology.

A reflection on the concept of radicalization and its meaning at national level introduces the study. The common assumption of this concept in Europe doesn´t seem to be so relevant in the actual Portuguese context.
The mapping of the legal framework for preventing youth radicalization, including laws, decrees and ministerial resolutions, and of the programmes, initiatives and projects implemented at national level, focused in school and online environments, allowed to reflect
on the national state-of-art, in terms of prevention of radicalization of youth and openness to the implementation of positive psychology- based innovative approaches.

The analysis of the panorama was clear – in Portugal there isn’t a harmonized and national policy, preventing youth radicalization and inspired in positive psychology approaches, neither in schools, neither online.

The fact that the country does not deal directly with terrorist threats, as well as the fact that the most problematic schools are endowed with a high level of autonomy when structuring prevention (and reaction) measures to these problems, are some of the factors that can explain this current scenario. However, although there is no uniform national plan with preventive measures, it is clear that there is a high interest and sensitivity of the educational community towards positive psychology. Projects in schools, which are still embryonic and emerging, have already proved the relevance of developing this type of initiatives in Portugal.

Aurélie Delater
Project Manager, INOVA+

Pedro Costa
Senior Consultant and Project Manager, INOVA+

Joana Santos
Translator, INOVA+

Find the Portuguese chapter at page 289 of the full report

(click on the cover to download)