We are trying to catch people before they fall. We believe there is a psychosocial state of mind when someone is looking for something – they are looking for alternatives to improve their current situation or address present grievances. We operate with a razor thin margin of error, working to identify individuals who are in this vulnerable state and who might have the highest propensity to be enticed by the ideologues recruiting new members to extremist ideology.
For that reason, our every step is informed by advisory and careful research, data collection and analysis conducted by experts in fields of sociology, psychology, strategic communications and international security.
The theory of Identity Vulnerability describes the motivational and personality characteristics of individuals who may be susceptible to violent ideologies. In this report, we describe Identity Vulnerability as an audience theory and explain why Identity Vulnerable individuals can be receptive to being recruited to extremist causes. We then provide an overview of the original research that we have conducted in order to gain a better understanding of the preferences, goals, motivations and challenges of Identity Vulnerable individuals. The insights gained from this research will help The ’MPOWER Project create a positive alternative messaging campaign that supports identity empowerment and seeks to present a positive alternative path of significance.