As part of the Research for Civil Security 2012-2017 framework program of the German Federal Government, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is providing EUR 2.7 million to the junior research group on "Jihadism on the Internet" at the Department of Anthropology and African Studies at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU).
The project was initiated by Professor Matthias Krings of the Department of Anthropology and African Studies at Mainz University. It brings together six young academics and researchers from the fields of Anthropology, Islamic Studies, and Film and Media Studies. Group leader Dr. Christoph Günter is a junior researcher with extensive knowledge of the visual culture of jihadist movements. Together with two other researchers and three doctoral candidates, the group is working on the analysis of jihadist images and videos. They are also examining how this material proliferates online and how various audience groups react. For this purpose, anthropological methods are being employed in combination with new digital technologies in use in the humanities and cultural studies. The findings of the project will help supplement research on radicalization and media research and may also aid in the development of a communication strategy for counter measures as well as the assessment of potential risk. Over the medium term, the research results are being uploaded to an online platform designed to provide material for political education, handouts for education and prevention projects as well as for press offices and for political decision-makers.
Dr. Christoph Günther