Upcoming events

Strong Cities Network Global Summit

17-19 May 2017

Aarhus, Denmark

Joint-hosted by the City of Aarhus, East Jutland Police and the Strong Cities Network, this year’s SCN Global Summit will be combined with the second Aarhus conference on Building Resilience to Radicalisation and Violent Extremism. This follows the first Aarhus international conference in 2015 and the inaugural SCN Global Summit in Antalya, Turkey in 2016. The event is expected to attract around 500-600 delegates.

Following an ‘open house’ event showcasing the Aarhus Model and a meeting of the SCN International Steering Committee on 17 May, the 2017 agenda will open with Ministerial Addresses and a welcome from the Mayor of Aarhus, Jacob Bundsgaard. A High-Level Mayoral Keynote Session on the morning of 18 May will bring together mayors from across the network and leading international cities to set out a joint vision for municipal leadership and coordination on countering violent extremism and community polarisation. Across 18 and 19 May, a series of training workshops led by leading experts and city practitioners and joint facilitated by the SCN and the City of Aarhus will develop learning and capacity across a range of key thematic issues pertinent to local CVE. For the full draft agenda, please click here.

Previous events

YouthCAN Innovation Lab

2-3 March 2017

Kuala Lampur, Malaysia

ISD’s Youth Civil Activism Network held a Youth Innovation Lab In Kuala Lampur on 2-3 March 2017.

This fast-paced and action-oriented workshop combines training and creation to empower young activists and produce new innovative campaigns to counter extremism


YouthCAN Innovation Lab

6-7 October 2016

London, United Kingdom

ISD’s Youth Civil Activism Network held a Youth Innovation Lab London on 6-7 October.

This fast-paced and action-oriented workshop combines training and creation to empower young activists and produce new innovative campaigns to counter extremism.


On and Off-line Solutions to Radicalization and Recruitment: A Discussion with Former Extremists

22 September 2016

New York, United States

ISD organised a side event at the 2016 United Nations General Assembly in New York in partnership with the George Washington University Program on Extremism and the Gen Next Foundation, with support of the Global Engagement Center (GEC).

The event brought together a group of former extremists in New York last week to discuss the unique role they have to play in countering violent extremism (CVE). It was a rare opportunity to hear first-hand about the positive work that many former extremists are doing to push back against the ideologies of groups like ISIS.

The gathering sent a powerful message on how to counter violent extremism from the very people who once inspired it. The hope is that by involving former extremists in CVE it will deter others from going down the same path they did.

Extreme Dialogue UK Launch

11 July 2016

London, United Kingdom

The UK launch of ISD’s Extreme Dialogue programme took place in St John’s Wood, London.

Extreme Dialogue uses the stories of real people, told in their own words, raw and unscripted, so that young people can learn from those whose lives have been profoundly impacted by extremism. The two newest films were premiered to over 80 students, teachers, local authority and education sector representatives present at the UK launch.

The films feature the stories of Billy McCurrie, a former member of the Ulster Volunteer Force, and Adam Deen, a former member of Al-Muhajiroun. Their stories will provide classroom tools for teachers, youth and community workers, helping them to open up vital discussions with young people on extremism.

Strong Cities Network Global Summit

11-12 May 2016

Antalya, Turkey

The SCN Global Summit brought together more than 200 delegates representing 62 cities and 39 countries to share knowledge and experiences around best practice in countering violent extremism at the local level.

The summit opened with a welcome from Menderes Türel, Mayor of Antalya, followed by a keynote from Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, lending his country’s full support to SCN and highlighting the importance of increased cooperation not just between countries but between cities in countering extremism. He was joined by the Mayor of Istanbul, Kadir Topbaş.

Highlighting the need for local efforts to counter violent extremism, H.E. Governor Hassan Ali Joho (Mombasa), Minister Ranjit Patil (Maharashtra/ Mumbai), Lord Mayor Frank Jensen (Copenhagen) and Andy Berke (Chattanooga) spoke about their work in safeguarding communities from violent extremism.

The Global Summit also saw the launch of SCN’s Online Hub, where you can find out more information about the SCN.

YouthCAN Innovation Lab

11-13 February 2015

Kigali, Rwanda

ISD, in partnership with the Commonwealth Secretariat, hosted the first Commonwealth YouthCAN innovation lab in Kigali, Rwanda, from February 11-13th, bringing together over 35 changemakers from around the region. YouthCAN, founded in June 2015 at the Youth CVE Summit in Oslo, Norway, is a global network that exists to ensure civil society efforts in countering violent extremism are the best they can be. The network now has well over 300 active members worldwide.

At the Commonwealth YouthCAN lab in Kigali, ISD brought together youth-activists, creatives, athletes and social media representatives for counter-narrative training and content creation to push back against hate, extremism, and violence. This was the first of many labs being planned in 2016 for YouthCAN in Europe and the Commonwealth.

YouthCAN Commonwealth Launch

27 November 2015


On November 27, 2015, YouthCAN was invited to expand from Europe to the Commonwealth, expanding the reach of the network to the 53 member states worldwide. Through Innovation Labs, where young people gather with cross-sector professionals to create campaigns to push back against extremism and build the YouthCAN network further. Following this launch, a series of Labs will be held throughout the Commonwealth in 2016.

YouthCAN Innovation Lab

27 October 2015


On 27 October, the Institute for Strategic Dialogue hosted the first of three European Innovation Labs for the Youth Civil Activism Network (YouthCAN). This event, attended by over 40 regional youth activists and practitioners, and included representatives from Facebook and Google to help the creation of a number of counter-narrative projects on the day including ideas for films, apps, and offline initiatives to help combat violent extremism.

Strong Cities Network Launch

29-30 September 2015

New York

The Strong Cities Network was launched on September 29 at the UN General Assembly, following the Leaders’ Summit on Countering ISIL and Violent Extremism. Welcoming remarks were offered by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Prince Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. U.S. Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch provided a Kenote address. Following this,the Strong Cities International Steering Committee, consisting of approximately 25 mayors and other leaders from cities and other sub-national entities from around the globe, held its inaugural meeting on September 30.

Kenya CVE Training Lab

28 June 2015


In line with the East Africa Regional CVE Summit, ISD hosted a CVE training lab in Nairobi in June 2015. The CVE training lab brought together journalists and NGO workers to learn the tools to tackle extremism at the local level. The award for the best idea and the closing speech was given by the Director of the Kenya NCTC.

Club of Three Working Session

26 June 2015


In June 2015, a Club of Three-Global Relations Forum (GRF) Working Session took place in Istanbul. It was the second meeting to engage in a dialogue on Europe-Turkey cooperation, and saw the continuation of the fruitful partnership between the Club of Three and GRF.

Women and Extremism Summit

8-9 June 2015

Washington DC

The inaugural Women and Extremism (WaE) Summit, co-hosted by the Institute for Strategic Dialogue (ISD) and the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), was held on June 8-9 at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, DC.

It was the first of its kind; a policy event focused on the role(s) women play in extremism and counter-extremism. The summit not only helped develop a greater understanding of the role women can play, but also brought together a range of actors contributing to this arena as practitioners, researchers and activists.