"Physical facilitating environments – prisons and madrassas (mechanisms and vehicles of violent radicalisation)". Paper presented at the Combating Jihadist Terrorism in the UK Conference, 2018

Activity: Participating in or organising an eventParticipation in conference


Ultimately radicalisation in both prison settings and madrassas and religious-education settings does occur or is attempted. This review has flagged a number of cases where this has clearly happened or has been seriously attempted. In a UK context, do these cases represent very isolated instances or evidence of a substantive and significant phenomenon? While other countries may have different experiences, the review finds that in the UK the evidence suggests that successful radicalisation is rare in both settings. The evidence highlights that other factors play a role in the radicalisation process and that physical setting alone appears to be a poor predictor for radicalisation. Nevertheless, it is also clear that both types of settings remain widely regarded by the media and within government as prominent centres of radicalisation. This has led to policy being specifically directed to countering and preventing radicalisation in such spaces. There is no indication that this is trend is about to change any time soon and we can continue to expect both prisons and madrassas being described as high risk centres of radicalisation in what is often a simplistic and poorly informed debate.

Period12 Sept 2018
Event typeConference
LocationLondon, United KingdomShow on map
Degree of RecognitionNational


  • radicalisation
  • prison
  • prison radicalisation
  • madrassas