Key Facts

Principal Investigator:

  • Prof. Dr. Margit Stein, University of Vechta, Department of General Pedagogy

Research assistant:

  • Alexandra Schramm

Duration: 11/2020 - 10/2024

Causes and Effects of radical Islam from the perspective of Islamic theologians (UWIT)

Stances and expertise of (prospective) Islamic theologians on causes and effects of Islamism in Germany

Islamic theologians undoubtedly play an important role as disseminators: As teachers or clerics, they shape the political and religious attitudes of Muslims - be it in settings like Islamic religious education in schools or religious instruction in mosques. However, their views on the causes and effects of Islamism and Islamist radicalisation have not yet been grasped academically. The UWIT project thus contributes important perspectives to the question of how the socialization, upbringing, and education of young Muslims is shaped and in which direction it should evolve in the eyes of the theologians. These expert opinions are of great socio-political interest, not least because of their preventive effect.

In the first phase of the project, UWIT will conduct qualitative interviews with lecturers and students of Islamic theology with and without teaching prospects. In this way, the project systematically surveys the view of (prospective) theologians on the causes and effects of Islamism in Germany as well as their approaches to the prevention of radicalisation. In a literature and document analysis, UWIT also collects module manuals from the institutes and centres for Islamic theology.

In the second phase of the project, the research results will be adapted for practical use and put into practice in workshops and training courses on Islamist radicalisation. Target groups include university teachers as well as professionals from schools, social work, prevention practice, and Muslim communities. A roadmap will show how radicalisation takes place and how it can be recognized and prevented. The UWIT project will test and evaluate these formats to modify them if necessary and publish them as open access material.

Film "The UWIT Project" | Duration 2"19' | Production Ute Seitz // Philipp Offermann | PRIF 2022


"At the institutions and centers for Islamic theology, we find a great deal of expertise that has barely had a voice in radicalization research," says Prof. Dr. Margit Stein. Her project UWIT - Causes and Effects of radical Islam from the Perspective of Islamic Theologians - wants to change that. In the interview, she describes findings on the preventive influences of Islamic religious education on young people and explains initial hypotheses regarding how this effect can be further strengthened through teacher training.