EXIT Europe

Project Name

EXIT Europe

Project Logo

Logo EXIT Europe


Project Coordinator

Austrian Ministry of the Interior – Office for the Protection of the Constitution and Counterterrorism
(Bundesministerium für Inneres – Bundesamt für Verfassungsschutz und Terrorismusbekämpfung)

Project Consortium

  • Association Dialogues Citoyens
  • Cultures Interactive E.V.
  • Fondazione Benvenuti in Italia
  • Mládež ulice – Youth Street Work
  • Österreichisches Institut für internationale Politik
  • Türkische Gemeinde in Schleswig-Holstein
  • Vrije Universiteit Brussel

Project Start Date


Duration of the Project

27 Months (01.01.2019 – 31.03.2021)

Description of the Project

In the face of increasing risks of radicalisation in Europe, the ISF-project ‘EXIT Europe’ pursues the key objective to develop locally embedded distancing and exit programmes which enable radicalised individuals to deradicalise, disengage and rehabilitate across various forms of violent extremism – aiming to implement them in European countries where they appear to be mostly lacking. Project activities will go along an European east to south axis – going through Austria, connecting partners in Germany, Italy, France and Spain with neighbour Slovakia, liaising with associate partners Hungary and Czech Republic.

EXIT Europe will build on:

  • Existing expertise on distancing and de-radicalisation practice from the Austrian ‘National Network for Prevention and Countering Violent Extremism and De-radicalisation’ (BNED) and the pilot phase of its national exit programme in particular (Österreichisches Ausstiegsprogramm aus dem gewaltbereiten Extremismus)
  • local resources of intensive mentoring with multi-challenge young people who have not yet become visible in their potential to add to European exit practice and expertise, taking into consideration developed local methods in order to effectively address the actual radicalisation challenges in all involved partner countries
  • the German national ‘Live Democracy!’ prevention programme (LD), especially the national Working Groups on Exit and Distancing Work within LD which are working intensely since 2015 and before
  • the methodology guidelines and quality criteria of the ‘RAN Derad Declaration of Good Practice’ from the ‘Radicalisation Awareness Network' (RAN CoE) and its RAN Derad group (and RAN Exit group)
  • recently developed methodological innovations, such as the ‘Triangular Exit Work Approach’ and the concept of ‘Formative Evaluation’, designed to bring evaluation and consultancy closer to actual work processes and strengthen impact
  • elements from the restorative justice-methodology as well as legal expertise on defined protocol for data exchange and data protection in inter-agency exit work
  • elements from gender-oriented approaches.

Cross-extremism perspective

The project aims to follow a cross-extremism approach will allow to use the same key elements of intensive psycho-social mentoring in exit and distancing work across various forms of religiously and politically based extremisms (i.e. neo-Nazism, Islamism, hate groups, vigilantes etc.) in order to adapt the approach to ‘local radicalisation challenges’ found in each operative partner country.

Multi-Agency Approach

EXIT Europe pursues an integrated multi-agency approach in a locally embedded context which provides both de-radicalisation/ distancing and rehabilitation/ social re-integration measures. All local exit monitoring activities will be civil society-based, building local teams of exit practitioners which encompass experienced (exit) practitioners/mentors from civil society and the public sector. Furthermore, liaisons with local security and law enforcement agencies will be pursued, complemented by the cooperation with independent experts for local formative evaluation who will both consult and evaluate local activities, and give recommendations for the continuation of exit and distancing work after the life of the project.
As a result, all actors involved will become part of local community PVE networks in order to 1) provide opportunities for re-integration and ensure continuity of intervention, and 2) strive to communicate to the wider public locally and nationally, raising awareness of the nature of de-radicalisation/ distancing interventions as well as of the necessity to provide rehabilitation/ social re-integration measures – therefore supporting an all-government perspective and a whole-society approach in the prevention of violent extremism and hate crime.

Beneficiaries are: local exit practitioners and communities EU wide, exit candidates, policy makers in the field, practice and action research, EU/national working groups on distancing and exit work. An innovative three level QM procedure combines ‘formative evaluation’/consultancy by an independent local expert with both central and external scientific evaluation, added by state-of-the-art ethics and data protection framework.

“This project is funded by the European Union’s Internal Security Fund – Police under grant agreement No. 823675.”

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