Responses to female youth engagement in violent extremist groups in Mali and Niger
Mali and Niger face a rapid rise in violent extremism, in which young people are the main actors. In particular, the involvement of young women in these movements is becoming more and more visible and troubling. Faced with these challenges, states, local actors, and international institutions have suggested solutions in the form of policies, laws, and programs. However, these solutions are poorly informed by evidence. The little research that does exist on these issues often takes the form of studies of opinion and perception, which do not allow for in-depth analysis or the development of viable solutions to counter the engagement of young women in violent extremism.
This research will help fill these gaps. The researchers will apply a mixed and comparative methodology to groups of young men and women (18-35 years) in the regions most affected by the involvement of young women in violent extremist movements in Mali and Niger. They will clarify, document, and analyze the underlying causes, as well as the individual and collective resilience factors in the involvement of young women in violent extremist movements. These findings will be used to suggest tools, approaches, and strategies to counter the engagement of young women in violent extremist movements.