ISDEP (Improving Security By Democratic Participation) is based on the EU Commission’s Counter Terrorism strategy. It aims to prevent people turning to terrorism by tackling the factors or root causes which can lead to radicalisation and recruitment, in Europe and internationally.

As the landscape of the global threat changes, there is a growing need to respond accordingly to the diverse ideological challenge of terrorism and the threat we face from those who promote it. 

The ISDEP project harmonises with the EU’s Internal Security strategy which recognises that internal security cannot be achieved in isolation from the rest of the world.  This project resonates with the EU’s commitment to promoting human rights, democracy, peace and stability within the EU Member States.

The rise in violent extremism globally determines the need to strengthen our institutional capacity to respond to these issues and to build resilience within front line sector staff.

This project also recognises that terrorist organizations and those influenced by them, adapt and innovate, as demonstrated by the attack on a flight from Amsterdam to Detroit on Christmas Day 2009 and the bombings in Stockholm, Sweden.  The tragic events on Utoya Island in Norway have also clearly demonstrated the need to respond to all forms of extremism including lone actor attacks.  More recently, the indiscriminate attack on the Boston marathon in the USA, the terrorist attack on a serving soldier in the UK, and the influential role of social media and internet have again signified the urgent need to engage early with practitioners who work with vulnerable people and communities in order to prevent  violence inspired by extremist ideology.

Although, led by UK Association of Chief Police Officers, ISDEP is not solely a police initiative and by working jointly with the a wide variety of partners from 8 European Member States, ISDEP will help build resilience for front line sector agencies to support individuals who are vulnerable to being drawn into terrorism.  The project will focus on four key areas of front line sector i.e. Law enforcement, Non-government organisations, Prisons/ Probation and Higher/ Further education.

The project partner member states working in ISDEP demonstrates an excellent geographical spread, involving members from northern, southern and Eastern Europe.

ISDEP will work with front line sector staff through the development of a number of resources for training to raise awareness around the processes that lead to radicalisation. This will allow the front line sector to recognise, respond and challenge the ideology and narratives associated with any form of terrorism, ultimately creating a safeguarding mechanism for vulnerable individuals.