Alexander Thurston

In Brief: Foreword for the Lake Chad Basin Research Initiative Compendium

Cover page

In fall 2017, the RESOLVE Network launched a major project to analyze religiosity on university campuses in the Lake Chad Basin. The project was related but not limited to the context of the Boko Haram insurgency. The project generated four major studies, including one research report based on a desk literature review and three country case studies (Nigeria, Cameroon, and Chad) based on original fieldwork. The project was driven by policymakers’ and researchers’ desire to more fully understand political and religious change in this conflict-affected region.

This RESOLVE research project sought not merely to investigate questions of radicalization but also to challenge stereotypes, particularly the idea that campuses are inevitably hotbeds of religious extremism. It has been credibly asserted that some of Boko Haram’s recruits, particularly in its early phases in the 2000s, were university students. Yet universities in the region have also been sites where key peacemaking initiatives are both studied and implemented.


Suggested citation:

Thurston, Alexander. In Brief: Foreword for the Lake Chad Basin Research Initiative Compendium. Washington, D.C.: RESOLVE Network, 2021.