Extreme ideologies and polarisation

Extreme ideologies can lead to social disruption, distrust and lack of empathy, diminished civic capacity, social tensions, clashes, hate speech, hate crime, conflicts and violence. The challenge is to produce a solid knowledge base on how extreme ideologies and accompanying behaviours affect the social fabric, bonds and cohesion of our societies, communities and cities. A better, more operational understanding of why, when and how extreme ideologies lead to societal polarisation is needed.


Proposals should take stock of available knowledge, lessons learned and solutions from existing EU, national and local research and practice on extreme and polarising ideologies and societal tendencies towards radicalisation in Europe. They should systematise knowledge on the drivers of these radical ideologies and tendencies, on the possible links with other types of polarisations (e.g. socio-economic inequalities, stigmatisation, discrimination or affective polarisation) and on political, socioeconomic and cultural consequences. Historic and cultural roots of extreme ideologies should also be investigated. The impact of traditional and new media and of political discourses should be addressed. Proposals should also explore the interconnection between various types of extreme ideologies, in particular how they impact and spur one another and the impact they have on democratic debate. An integral analytical framework as well as models and cross-national indicators on polarisation should be developed. Analysis of social, economic, education, culture and youth policies etc. and initiatives set up at EU, national and local levels to counteract polarisation should be undertaken to assess effectiveness and possible gaps. Involvement of a variety of stakeholders including civil society groups is expected, and best practices for mitigating and decreasing polarisation, including practices linked to social innovation, should be identified and disseminated to relevant actors.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU in the order of EUR 1.5 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Expected Impact

The action will equip key actors, institutions and organisations with knowledge and tools that allow for improved analysis, forecast, interventions and policies aimed at addressing polarisation and extreme ideologies. Concrete solutions for abating the sense of antagonism, fostering meaningful debates and expanding the spectrum of commonalities among people will contribute to decreasing the degree of polarisation in at-risk contexts.

Delegation Exception Footnote

This activity is directly aimed at supporting the development and implementation of evidence base for R&I policies and supporting various groups of stakeholders. It is excluded from the delegation to Research Executive Agency and will be implemented by the Commission services.

Cross-cutting Priorities

  • Socio-economic science and humanities
  • Gender
Date de candidature
Humanités : Philosophie, théologie et religion, Anthropologie & Ethnologie
Sciences sociales : Démographie, Identités, genre et sexualités, Science politique, Psychologie et sciences cognitives, Sociologie