Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism A Whole of Society Approach

Broadcast on August 11, 2016
With Paul Turner

The talk focuses on the approach of an international implementer of CVE projects, higlighting the need for more coordinated efforts, and explaining what a more holistic approach might look like. Paul Turner presents examples of successes both on the personal and project level, and shares some of the challenges faced in preventing violent extremism, and implementing CVE projects.  He emphasizes the importance of recognizing civilians' contributions to long-term security solutions.

Paul Turner

Senior Conflict Advisor, Communities in Transition Division, Creative Associates International
Paul Turner is the Senior Conflict Advisor at Creative Associates International and leads the technical aspects of projects and activities focused on Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) funded by USAID and the U.S. Department of State in Africa and the Middle East. Mr. Turner acts as the technical director for USAID's Office of Conflict Management and Mitigation's Programming Effectively Against Conflict and Extremism (PEACE) Indefinite Quantity Contract and supports CVE initiatives within Creative such as #peacehackdc ( He also serves as an adjunct faculty member teaching CVE Policy and Practice at American University’s School for International Service and providing instruction on Conflict Management at the University of Maryland’s Minor in International Development and Conflict Management. Over the past 20 years, Mr. Turner has led teams in countries as diverse as Afghanistan, Burma, and Nigeria to build peace, promote stability and/or foster economic development in more than 20 countries. In addition, he has encouraged proactive conflict prevention through efforts such as catalyzing policy discussions and designing innovative projects and he supported international development initiatives by supporting a regional economic development hub in southern Africa from Washington, D.C.. These opportunities provided insights and understanding for an additional 40 countries. While serving at the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations (CSO), he deployed to work in conflict-affected countries within every region across the world though generally focused on Africa. Mr. Turner also created tools, established interagency doctrine, led assessments, developed strategies, designed projects, exercises, and trainings, and facilitated the implementation of efforts to prevent or mitigate conflict while shaping policies to promote United States’ national interests. In the decade prior to his service with the U.S. Department of State, he worked with a wide-range of conflict-related civil society organizations in the United States, Europe, and Southern Africa. He holds a Masters in Peace and Conflict Studies granted jointly by the European University Centre for Peace Studies and Universitat Jaume I, a graduate diploma in Mediation and Negotiation from University of Erasmus, a graduate certificate in Environmental Science and Policy from the Central European University, and a Bachelor of Science in Political Science and Bachelor of Arts in Humanities from the Honors Program at the University of Tennessee.