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

QUEST is a cross-national three-year project focused on the shifting nature of identities and representations of Muslims in four European contexts: France, Norway, Spain and United Kingdom. Two phases of empirical research shape the deployment of the project focusing on the scale of cities. The first one will involve tracing, in a period of growing anxiety and mistrust, the discourses and mechanisms through which Muslims are folded into ‘the politics of threat’. The second phase will highlight and deepen on the basis of an original ethnographic data collection the representations and actual experience of Muslims in order to identify individual and collective discourses, practices and strategies in the re-elaboration process of what it means to ‘be Muslim’ in the context of a polarised Europe.

Strengthened by a collaboration with at least one partner among civil society and policy actors in each country, our extended engagements in urban settings will fuel a final ‘action’ phase dedicated to the sharing and transferring of innovative practices and forms of dialogue. A key ambition is to produce outputs that speak to stakeholders (policy, civil society, media) interested in furthering action in this area.

Research team

Project Leader:
Dr. Alexandra Poli,
Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (France)

Principal Investigators:
Dr A. Ma Cea D’Ancona,
Complutense University of Madrid (Spain)

Dr A. Hussain
University of Manchester (UK)

Dr V. Vestel
Oslo Metropolitan University (Norway)