This report presents the methodology and socio-demographic data gathered by the Open Think Tank (OTT) as part of its research on the interplay between state and religious actors and their influence on community vulnerability or resilience to patterns of violent extremism (VE) in Iraq. The focus of this study is to understand the extent to which the rise of violent extremism is linked to or influenced by the absence or dysfunction of state/governance institutions in affected communities, as well as the role of inactive and mistrusted formal religious institutions.

The analysis presented in this report is based on 59 interviews conducted between June and November 2021. The research team selected two case studies, namely the Hamdaniyyah and Tal Afar districts, which encompass the main cities in each district located in Nineveh Province, Iraq. The cities of Qaraqosh and Tal Afar were chosen as they have experienced significant impacts of violent extremism, particularly under the Islamic State group (IS). Following the liberation of these cities from IS between 2016 and 2017, they witnessed substantial demographic shifts and a process of militarization with the proliferation of armed groups along ethnic and confessional lines.


Click here to see the full report.




The OTT had the pleasure of receiving the German Consul-General, H.E. Barbara Wolf, at OTT office to discuss the current political and humanitarian developments in Iraq and the KRI.


Duhok. Sep 24, 2019


OTT  will gladly participate in co-organizing Nurses and the Future of Healthcare in the Middle East Conference in collaboration with The American University of Kurdistan and Nursing and Midwifery Development Centre. The conference will take place on 3-5 March of 2020 in Duhok.


As part of preparations for the Open Think Tank's upcoming conference (OPEN DEBATES 7), Dr. Mohammedali Taha, the President of the OTT, met with Kurdistan Parliament’s President Dr. Rewaz Faeq. We are glad to announce that Dr. Faeq will be participating in our next conference.
Erbil. Sep 8, 2019

The referendum for an Independent Kurdistan to be held on 25th of September 2017 is an important issue not only for Iraq but for the entire region and the international community. Despite the results of the upcoming referendum on 25th of September, a deeper discussion has to take place regarding the structure and shape of a Kurdish state agreed by all the population, regardless of gender, education, ethnicity, religion, political party, province and governorate of belonging. How does the new state have to be and look like? How inclusive will it be and what constitutional and legal mechanisms will there be in place? What political, economic, social, cultural etc. orders will the new state build and how much difference will it make when compared to the status quo? This survey is conducted in Kurdistan Region of Iraq three weeks prior to the referendum date to address the above questions. To get access to the survey results click here



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