Producing Media to Counter Radicalisation

Changing minds through media

Producing Media to Counter Radicalisation

Between 2005 and 2015 alone, we have witnessed a 540% increase in terrorist attacks targeting civilians worldwide (Global Terrorism Database).  Political extremists and terrorists are using the internet as an instrument for recruitment and propaganda. Campaigns to recruit civilians are aimed at vulnerable youth in fragile contexts. The drivers of radicalisation are multiple: ideological, religious, socioeconomic, political and personal drivers come into play to determine the likelihood that certain youth become susceptible to radicalization media and violent extremism. However, extremist organisations have capitalized on traditional, social and online media to spread their campaigns and influence winning hearts and minds. 

As the world struggles to cope with the persuasive powers of extremists, RNTC is the first training institute to offer media and communications professionals a methodology to counter radical ideologies. Our unique course sets out proven strategies to respond to the distortions of radical propaganda. The skills learnt in this course are applicable to all media, on any platform, and in any region. The course has been run in 6 countries since 2016. It forms part of our media for behaviour change group of trainings and has a focus on building effective counter radicalisation campaigns that use alternate and counter messaging.

RNTC has been implementing effective trainings across the world in Producing Media to Counter Radicalisation. The programmes have run across Europe, Asia, The Middle East, West Africa and East Africa each responding to the threats of radical groups.  We unpack what has worked and is working and the lessons learnt from those campaigns that have not.

At the end of this three-week course you leave with an implementation plan for your own counter radicalisation campaign. 

This is a 3-week course.

This course takes place at the RNTC training centre and studios in Hilversum, which is about 20 minutes by train from Amsterdam Central Station.

Academic Year: 2019 - 2020

Course fee: 3655.00 Euro
All-in-fee: 5500.00 Euro



  • Understand the dominant ideological messaging of radical groups and how the position their target audiences.
  • You will be able to produce multimedia material which changes attitudes and behaviours, under the guidance of experienced RNTC media experts, and put into practice key learning and persuasion theories.
  • In this course, you learn from actual anti-radicalisation programmes and real-life cases that help bring individuals and communities back from the brink of radicalisation.
  • Learning-by-doing: you will use creative techniques and new ways to deliver alternative narratives to micro-target audiences.


For more information

Course dates

Monday, September 9, 2019 - 09:00 to Friday, September 27, 2019 - 17:00
Monday, January 27, 2020 - 09:00 to Friday, February 14, 2020 - 17:00



Why take this course

This course provides all the tools you need to craft convincing narratives that change minds and counter radicalisation.

RNTC is the first training institute to offer media professionals a methodology to counter the ideologies of violence through the media. Our unique course sets out highly effective strategies that address the roots of radical propaganda.

This 3-week course shows how any journalist and any campaigner can help counter radicalisation. We explain universal theories on story, format, and audience mapping, and how they can be applied as an antidote to the global problem of radicalisation.

Participants practice techniques which equip them to design and produce alternative narratives with an emotional appeal that is stronger than radical propaganda. We will discuss multimedia materials such as videos by RNW Media produced to counter-radicalise some Yemeni target audiences.

Course outline

Week 1:

Producing compelling stories and formats to create persuasive alternative narratives. The first week includes several small group interactive sessions and workshops to ensure that you learn by doing. It includes:

Know your target audience module:

  • Where do ideas come from?
  • How to zero in on an audience
  • Mapping your target audience
  • Influencers, agreed realities, and emotional payoffs
  • Using mapping to discover target audiences
  • Using social media for insights
  • Developing target audience statements
  • Pitching target audiences

Persuade your target audience module:

  • What is learning and why this is important to understanding audiences
  • How do people learn? Information, skills, and behaviours
  • The ingredients of persuasive aims
  • Why you need different credible sources
  • Why you should craft emotional appeals
  • The benefits of formulating a logical approach
  • Investigating examples – persuading target audiences
  • Applying persuasion to your own context

Storytelling for media professionals module:

  • Narrative journalism versus information journalism
  • The eight essential elements of story
  • Symbols and universal truths
  • Studying real examples illustrating the eight essential elements of story
  • Story detective sessions: develop your own story
  • The micro story: story in a tweet
  • Create characters to engage audiences
  • The importance of character: identifying people like us
  • The types and tropes of drama characters
  • Character histories and how to craft them
  • Hero journeys and creating powerful character growth

Creative formats to engage audiences module:

  • How do we tell stories using media?
  • Ten engaging formats and what makes them unique
  • Which formats are good for conveying information versus conveying emotions?
  • Types of formats and the ideas box
  • Combining ideas creatively
  • Investigating formats: interviewing
  • Investigating formats: the discussion
  • Practice: engaging audiences with the discussion format


Week 2:

  • We draw on lessons learned from anti-radicalisation experts and people who have been radicalised, understanding their motivations and emotions
  • We examine the landscape and current techniques used to radicalise from various perspectives, including al Shabab, Al Qaeda, Boko Haram, and ISIS (amongst others)  
  • We explore the radical narrative versus the counter narrative and its outcomes
  • We begin to create our own counter narratives focusing on our own contexts
  • We examine social media strategies in use by radicals and their efficacy
  • We also look at the potency of their offline strategies


Week 3:

In week three, we combine the learning of the first two weeks and use the RNTC method of learning-by-doing. You will create counter-radicalisation content, in a variety of media (audio, text, still image, or video) and for various platforms (including radio, TV, print, web, or social media) to put the theories and lessons learnt into practice.

Dates and deadlines

Course dates: 4 February - 22 February 2019 OKP & MSP scholarship application window: closed

Course dates: 9 September - 27 September 2019 OKP & MSP scholarship application window: 7 February - 14 March 2019

Course dates: 27 January - 14 February 2020 MSP scholarship application window: 7 February - 14 March 2019 OKP scholarship application window: 6 June - 11 July 2019

Admission requirements

Applicants must meet the following requirements:

  • You are a media professional with radio, TV, online, or video/film experience.
  • You have a minimum of three years' working experience in a media or in a campaigning organisation.
  • You are able to provide the original proof (or a properly certified copy) of your most recent educational qualification in secondary or higher education.
  • You have sufficient skills in spoken and written English as this is the working language for our courses.

After you have completed all the course sessions and assignments you will receive an RNTC certificate and join the ranks of our more than 5,500+ RNTC alumni worldwide.


You may qualify for a professional fellowship for an RNTC course. The most commonly used fellowships for our courses are the OKP (formerly known as NFP) and MSP (MENA) scholarships. OKP fellowships are available for 52 countries and MSP scholarships for 10 countries. For more information, please visit our scholarships page.