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Unveiling the Path to Disengagement: The OPEN MINDS Project Tackling Radicalization in Greece

Radicalization of young people is a global phenomenon, and Greece is not immune to it. In recent years, there has been an increase in the number of young people in Greece who have been radicalized, either towards extreme religious or political ideologies. The reasons behind this phenomenon are multifaceted, and it is difficult to pinpoint a single factor. However, the OPEN MINDS project aims to explore the socio-economic drivers of radicalization in Greece and present strategies for disengagement from radical contexts. 

The OPEN MINDS project is a research initiative that seeks to understand the complex drivers of radicalization and deradicalization. It is a consortium of researchers from various disciplines such as conflict and terrorism studies, sociology, psychology, geography, linguistics, moral philosophy, computer science, and econometrics. 

The project will conduct extensive fieldwork to collect data on the socio-economic factors that contribute to radicalization in Greece. The project will also analyze exit strategies and disengagement from radical contexts. This is a critical aspect of the research, as it is essential to understand how individuals can leave radical groups and ideologies. Understanding the mechanisms of disengagement will be a valuable tool in preventing radicalization. 

One of the unique aspects of the OPEN MINDS project is its focus on non-radicalizing identity. The project seeks to provide complementary knowledge on non-radicalizing identity, which can serve as a counterbalance to radicalization. The researchers hope that by providing young people with alternative identities that are not based on extremist ideologies, they can prevent them from being lured into radical groups. 

The OPEN MINDS project will translate its research findings into two intervention scenarios, gaming, and training. These interventions will enable young people to take an active role in a more inclusive Europe. The gaming intervention will provide an interactive platform for young people to learn about the risks and consequences of radicalization. The training intervention will provide workshops for teachers and other professionals who work with young people to help them identify the signs of radicalization and provide support to those who are at risk.

 In conclusion, the radicalization of young people is a significant concern in Greece, and the OPEN MINDS project aims to address this issue. The project’s focus on the socio-economic drivers of radicalization and deradicalization, as well as non-radicalizing identity, is a unique approach that can provide valuable insights into preventing radicalization. The interventions proposed by the project can be a valuable tool in preventing radicalization and promoting a more inclusive society.

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