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Ambitious ARENAS (Analysis of and Responses to Extremist Narratives) project launches in Paris – May 2023

We are delighted to announce our participation in a prestigious new Horizon Europe project, ARENAS (Analysis of and Responses to Extremist Narratives) project.  The project is funded by the EU Horizon Programme, the Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (2021-2027) and is co-ordinated by Julien Longhi and his team in CY Cergy Paris Université, France. It brings together a multidisciplined consortium of nine Universities, an NGO, two SME’s as well as five associated impact partners including International and National Associations, and NGOs.  What an honour for Momentum to be included in the consortium, and particularly as it recognises our specialisms in communications and dissemination.  

Over the next four years, ARENAS puts the spotlight on extremist narratives that affect political and social life in Europe. The team will examine the nature of these narratives and seeks to understand the discourses they impact, particularly with regard to science, gender and the nation. By understanding of how these narratives work, ARENAS will empower people to resist them. To foster a spirit of people living together in harmony across Europe, policy recommendations will be made as to how prevent such narratives taking hold in the future. 

The overall objective of ARENAS is to characterise, measure and understand the role of extremist narratives in discourses that have an impact not only on political and social spheres, but importantly on the stakeholders themselves.  Leading an innovative and ambitious research programme, ARENAS will significantly contribute to filling the gap in contemporary research, make recommendations to policy makers, medias, lawyers, social inclusion professionals and educational institutions, and propose solutions for countering extremes narratives for developing more inclusive and respectful European societies. 

 Momentum will have specific responsibilities in two of the seven project work packages. Work package 5 addresses mediations and remediations for extremist narratives. Under the guidance of Anthony Carty, Momentum will lead on the experimentation phase, a series of workshops to identify extremist narratives construction and alternative discourse proposals. Momentum also takes the lead on the creation and development of a didactic platform Exchange and Engage online.  As lead partner in Work Package 7, Momentum is responsible for the Dissemination, Communication and Exploitation of the ARENAS project.  And here, our multimedia team come to the fore, involving Gillian Keane (branding and graphics), Ivan Apandic (website) and Denise Callan leading on Strategy, Messaging and a consistent Communications campaign in the next four years.   Anthony will also support the team in linking communications into all other work package actions.  Over the coming months, the Momentum focus is on raising the awareness of the project both with identified target groups, organisations and stakeholders, as well as with citizens across Europe. This will be achieved using digital and print communications, and in time, leading the development of videos and podcasts as well as guiding partners on in person and online events. 

The Momentum team of Orla, Anthony and Denise were in Paris week of May 8th, 2023, joining partners from across the consortium to examine and validate the project’s goals, methodology and activities.  Three intense, but enlightening days of exploration across each of the seven Work Package as teams shared their specific research and innovation objectives, strategies and the outcomes that will emerge.  Partners also put the spotlight on Project Management and Communications, the setting up of Governance bodies and an introduction to the ARENAS Ethical Board.  Partners also benefitted from a highly interactive session on Data Management and Data Security and the opportunity to hear from sister Horizon Europe projects currently working on connected themes. Dynamic presentations, discussions, and breakout groups helped to build relationships and support collaboration between the partners as they embark on this project together.   

The ARENAS consortium comprises CY Cergy Paris Université (France), and Institute of Contemporary history – Ljubljana University (Slovenia), Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona (Spain), Institut de Ciències Polítiques i Socials (Spain), University of Helsinki (Finland), CNRS (France), Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf (Germany), Università degli studi di Genova (Italy), University of Cyprus (Cyprus), Creative Ideas (Latvia), Momentum Educate + Innovate (Ireland), Water On Mars (Italy), and Fundacio OXFAM Intermon (Spain). 

Momentum is so delighted to be part of ARENAS ambition, and invite you to follow the project as it unfolds:


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