Thursday, May 26 2016

Government response to annual report of the Intelligence and Security Committee

 The Government today published its response to the annual report 2010-2011 of The Intelligence and Security Committee.
The ISC in its report questioned again the metrics for measuring the effectiveness of the CONTEST counter-terrorism strategy and in particular, the work of RICU (Research, Information and Communication Unit).
The ISC report states:
"The ISC in the last Parliament expressed concern regarding the lack of such indicators to measure the impact of PREVENT (into which Agency and police resources have been allocated over the past few years).
In its 2008–2009 Annual Report the ISC said that:
Given the importance of this work, and the considerable funding it is receiving, it is essential that clear and transparent targets are in place against which progress can be measured… [We] recommend that more effective measures are developed against which to assess progress. “

The Government in its response explains:
“The need for better evaluation of PREVENT work was identified by the Government in its recent review of PREVENT. OSCT is currently working to improve the performance monitoring and evaluation of CONTEST as a whole and PREVENT in particular. PREVENT funding will be rigorously assessed against sound business case criteria to ensure alignment to the new strategy, consideration of benefits, value for money and risk. The aim is to ensure that PREVENT projects are more likely to reach people who are vulnerable to radicalisation.
“PREVENT performance indicators are under development and are listed in the new CONTEST strategy:
1) public support in the UK and overseas for terrorism;
2) the proportion of the 25 priority local areas in which implementation of the PREVENT programme is on track;
3) the numbers participating in PREVENT programmes to support vulnerable people, and the proportion assessed to be at lower risk of supporting or engaging in terrorism-related activity after completing the programme;
4) popularity of terrorism-related websites and the impact of our work to disrupt terrorist content; and
5) the extent of radicalisation in prisons.

These indicators may change slightly in their final form, depending in particular on whether we are satisfied that supporting data will be available.
“The Government is committed to developing more professional counter-narrative products. The Research, Information and Communications Unit (RICU) will focus on the priority geographical areas and sectors identified in the new PREVENT strategy. Its output and impact will be regularly assessed and reported to Ministers in the Home Office and Foreign and Commonwealth Office.”

The ISC annual report 2010-2011 can be read here.
The Government’s response to the report can be found here.

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