Meetings & Events

Programming for the Future: Behavioral Insights…

24 June 2021


Programming for the Future: Behavioral Insights to Counter Terrorism in the Digital Decade - Third UN Counter Terrorism Week Side Event


Production Date: 
24 Jun 2021

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Side Event on the margins of the Second United Nations Counter-Terrorism Week organized by the UN Office on Counter-Terrorism.
1.      Introductory remarks by the moderator 2.      Keynote presentations by the USG and General Al-Ansari 3.      Improving existing CT and PCVE programs and adapting them to terrorism's increasingly online nature (Jessica White) 4.      Using Behavioral Insights (BI)/ Sciences to improve upon CT and PCVE programs and engaging with prevention online (Doha Hub/PKCMB) 5.      How BI has been used by the UN within a CT and/or PCVE context (UNDP/UN Innovation Network (experts). 6.      Qatar's recognition of this evolving threat and their foresight in working with the UN to establish the Hub (Mutlaq bin Majed Al-Qahtani) 7.      Closing remarks by the moderator The above topics are relevant to Pillars I and II of the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy, because the research and testing components of the Behavioral Insights (BI) approach empirically confirms the conditions conducive to the spread of terrorism before implementing and scaling programs to prevent and/or counter them (pillars and 1 and 2).  Digital technologies will play an increasingly important role in terrorist planning and attacks. Confronting this requires an approach which is sufficiently flexible to cater for the evolving nature of the threat and the digital landscape.  The Behavioral Insights approach helps address these demands. Overall, this side-event would contribute to the "transformative technology" theme of counter-terrorism week. The overall purpose will be to: -        Offer an opportunity to continue to sensitize Member States and participants about the Doha hub, and its envisaged contribution to efforts towards addressing the counter-terrorism challenges in the context of the growing diversity of digital environment conducive to the spread of violent extremism and terrorism. -        To contribute to a recognition of the importance of applying behavioral insights to P/CVE and countering terrorism. -        To share examples of how to integrate behavioral insights in developing an appropriate response and present the positioning and vision of the Hub as a partner for Member States, Global Compact Entities and other relevant actors. 1.      Mr. Vladimir Voronkov, Under Secretary General for Counterterrorism, United Nations Office of Counter terrorism. 2.      Major General H.E. Abdul Aziz Al-Ansari, Head of the Department for International cooperation, Ministry of Interior, Chairman of the National Counter-terrorism Committee, State of Qatar. 3.      Muhammad Rafiuddin Shah, Director, Deputy Director, Policy, Knowledge Management and Coordination Branch, Office of Counterterrorism 4.      Dr. Mutlaq bin Majed Al-Qahtani, the Special Envoy of the Foreign Minister of the State of Qatar for Counterterrorism and Mediation of Conflict Resolution, the National Focal Point for the Responsibility to Protect. 5.      Dr. Jessica White, a Research Fellow in the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) Terrorism and Conflict group. Presentation topic: Improving preventing and countering violent extremism methods, importance of applying a gender lens to CT and P/CVE methods, including program design, implementation, and evaluation, including in the media and online. 6.      Dr. Kurt Braddock, Assistant Professor of Public Communication, School of Communication, American University in Washington, DC., SOC's Center for Media and Social Impact (CMSI), Center for University Excellence's Polarization and Extremism Research and Innovation Lab (PERIL). Presentation focus: how theories of communication, persuasion, and social influence can be used to inform practices meant to prevent radicalization among vulnerable audiences. Development of communicative preventative and counter-radicalization strategies using online environment. 7.      Dr. Simbal Khan, Conflict Prevention and Peace building specialist/security analyst specializing in South-Central Asian region. I currently work as a consultant for UNDP on the Decentralization and Local Governance Program. Presentation focus: practical examples of how BI can be applied in PCVE programming.   Moderator(s): 1.      Dr. Aynabat Atayeva, Chief, International Hub on Behavioural Insights to Counter Terrorism, Doha, Qatar (alternatively Programme Manager)