Project: Qualify Unification in Europe for Shifting Trust (QUEST): a comparative research on Muslims responses to the politics of threat in France, UK, Spain and Norway

Acronym QUEST (Reference Number: 462-19-110)
Project Topic This project addresses two themes of the call, the emerging politics of threat and shifting identities and representations, in relation to the presence of Muslims in European public spheres. Through two phases of research, followed by an action phase involving civil society and policy actors, the project aims to (a) consider common discourses of threat accompanying the growing presence of Muslims in four European societies with different traditions of minority inclusion; (b) to move beyond such ‘problem oriented’ approaches by examining the shifting identities and representations of Muslims as these are emerging in an era of ‘democratic deficit’. A key aim is to identify individual and collective discourses, practices and strategies in the re-elaboration process of what it means to ‘be Muslim’ in a polarized Europe, by focusing on responses to stigmatization and exclusion. A final action phase (c) will seek to transfer innovative practices of engagement and dialogue across the different European contexts. The project will make use of an ethnographic approach that involves mapping cultural production and activism through extended engagement with Muslims in urban settings, and with a special focus on youth and gender. While acknowledging the discourses of threat that pervade representations of Muslims in European public spheres, the project distinguishes itself from much of the research that represents Muslim agency in a stultifying manner. By focusing on new forms of engagement and dialogue in collaboration with civil society actors, the project seeks to promote more inclusive societies in a period of growing anxiety and mistrust.
Network Governance
Call Democratic Governance in a Turbulent Age

Project partner

Number Name Role Country
1 Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales Coordinator France
2 University of Manchester Partner United Kingdom
3 Norwegian Social Research -NOVA Partner Norway
4 University Complutense of Madrid Partner Spain