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Preventing Extremism in the Tunisian Educational System

New Policy Paper in the Policy Advice and Strategy Development Programm

Asma Ben Jebara
Emotional Intelligence as an Approach of Preventing Extremism in the Tunisian Educational System
C·A·Perspectives on Tunisia No. 03-2020


08.12.2020 · C·A·P

The revolutions in 2011, the subsequent struggles of transformation or counterrevolution as well as the outbreak of internal wars in Syria and Libya, fuelled by the extremist ideology of the so called Islamic State (ISIS), al Qaida and others, led to a deep crisis of orientation in the minds of many citizens in the Arab world, especially youth. In Tunisia, approximately 3,000 youngsters had joined ISIS, after having been indoctrinated, or, rather, manipulated and exploited in their feeling of disorientation, their missing sense in life, lack of recognition and perspective. Yet, at the same time, many of them were educated graduates, trained professionals and equiped with skills that the extremist groups were looking for.

In her Policy Paper, Asma Ben Jebara raises the question what education has to do with violent extremism in the Tunisian context. She explains the concept and approach of "Emotional Intelligence" to be considered a highly valuable contribution to building a stable youth psyche at school and the social life in general and to preventing extremism, radicalization and, finally, terrorism, in particular. In her analysis and list of recommendations, she presents "Emotional Intelligence" as a promising perspective for the Tunisian educational system; starting from the primary schools and heading to the last stages of college and university.

The policy paper is published in the Series C·A·Perspectives on Tunisia in the framework of the "Policy Advice and Strategy Development" Program in the framework of the Bavarian-Tunisian Action Plan 2016-2020 and supported by the Government of the Free State of Bavaria.

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