Associate Professor John McCauley has received a $1.1 million dollar grant from the US State Department to determine the effects of improved community policing on preventing violent extremism in Benin. This represents Phase 2 of a project administered conjointly with CIDCM and the START Center.
The border regions of Benin are particularly vulnerable to terrorist incursions from neighboring countries, yet security resources are limited. To address that challenge, this project is reinforcing community-police relationships in remote areas of the country as a strategy to prevent violent extremism. As police engage in improved community-based policing strategies and communities learn to trust and assist the police, information sharing between them can help to mitigate the terrorist threat and keep Benin safe. The UMD team, led by Dr. John McCauley and including team members from both CIDCM and the START Center, is working closely with the US embassy in Benin and with local experts to conduct community-oriented policing trainings and evaluate their effectiveness in improving community-police relations.