AREAS OF FOCUS

The Institute focusses on increasing communication between national and regional governments and minority communities, and also minority communities with their respective governments by utilising serving and retired government civilian and military personnel, community leaders and practitioners, academics and analysts to bridge the divides that currently exist.

Areas of particular concern in the domestic arena are social cohesion, radicalisation, criminality and civic disengagement; and in the international area, the preparation and support of UK, EU and NATO personnel who are employed as part of stabilisation efforts in areas with which there is a significant connection with Diaspora communities. The Institute facilitates maximising the contribution of Diaspora expertise in political, cultural and linguistic capabilities whilst simultaneously working towards mitigating potential radicalisation and terrorism from within those very same groups.

Social Cohesion

The Institute believes that the UK and Europe’s diversity is a source of their strength at home and abroad. This privileged position of influence carries enormous responsibility in providing leadership and support to the world community. The UK's relationship with the Commonwealth is a significant asset in forging such a role and its culture is open, welcoming and rooted in engagement and historically non-isolationist policies. The UK's openness to those who share its common values of democracy and human rights is of critical importance in overcoming the siren calls of communitarian politics and social disengagement that prey upon second and third generation members of immigrant communities.

Terrorism & Radicalisation

Terrorism is a scourge affecting the contemporary world. In particular, a number of extremist radical groups have targeted the UK and the EU and their interests abroad. The radicalisation of marginalised groups is a significant factor in exacerbating support towards terrorist activities. This threat must be countered across the spectrum of the activities of terrorists, their sympathisers and supporters. In particular, those that provide the ideological framework which supports the radicalisation of vulnerable groups and individuals must be forthrightly confronted.

The Institute adopts a targeted and nuanced grassroots educational approach to tackling this strategically sensitive and complex issue. It draws upon its direct involvement with UK and EU communities to support efforts to counter the threats posed by radicalisation. It empowers individuals with the knowledge and skills necessary to counter the extremist and radical discourse that bolsters those who would threaten public safety and national security.

International Conflict Areas

The nature of global inter-relations and the UK and EU's particular historical links with areas in which NATO forces are currently engaged result in unique opportunities and exacerbated terrorist threats. A key example of this is the NATO mission in Afghanistan which has now entered its ninth year of engagement. The NATO mission faces numerous challenges for which effective counter-strategies are still being formulated. NATO and ISAF wish to achieve demonstrable and enduring success within the next 2-5 years and the Institute has particular expertise to support NATO's aim to achieve peace and stability in Afghanistan and the region; and to enhance the effective preparation of personnel and organisations working in international stabilisation.

The Institute has a range of products and resources which have been specifically created to promote awareness of democratic and civic engagement by immigrant communities and their descendants and to guide government and NGOs to promote avenues of engagement and target their activities effectively.

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