Narrative Change Academy

Narrative Change Academy

Polarising, racist, and Islamophobic attitudes and discourses pose a major challenge to social cohesion in many European societies. From now on, the Young Islam Conference will counteract these throughout Europe with the Narrative Change Academy. The academy’s focus is specifically on the topic of Islam in Europe and how to shape a post-migrant society. Twelve young Europeans between the ages of 18-27 from different backgrounds and experiences participate in the academy.

The dates for the next academy year and information on how to apply will be published shortly.

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We are shaping the post-migrant Europe of tomorrow.

About the Narrative Change Academy

As academy participants, young Europeans acquire skills in strategic communication – particularly digital campaigning – to advocate for our vision of an open, post-migrant, and anti-racist society. The first academy year started in May 2023 and will run until February 2024. Working with experts, the participants will use the Narrative Change Approach to develop a digital campaign consisting of value-oriented, post-migrant, inclusive narratives about Muslims. In addition, the program will also prepare the participants, through targeted mentorship and a workshop series, to present their findings at a final event in Brussels with European stakeholders.

The trained Narrative Change Ambassadors are the start of a European post-migrant alumni network that will grow year by year, contributing in the long term to enabling a broader presence of value-based, post-migrant, inclusive narratives across Europe.

What is the Narrative Change approach?

The Narrative Change approach addresses the “movable middle” and focusses on values, concerns, and personal stories. This approach forms an important basis for genuine dialogue and democratic coexistence. Mainstream society is characterised by a lack of participation in migration discourses, concerns about growing inequality, and is potentially susceptible to populist ideas and similar rhetoric.


The paper Breaking Out of the Bubble: How to Change the Narrative on Muslims in Europe summarizes what we learned from the first year of the Narrative Change Academy. What surprised us, what do we want to do differently next time? What recommendations for action can we give to civil society organizations from all over Europe that are active in the field of migration and anti-racism and want to use the narrative change approach to leave their own bubble? The report outlines the concept and structure of the academy, presents important findings from the campaign work and examines the effectiveness of the newly developed narratives.


© Schore Mehrdju

The 2023-24 year

Twelve young people from France, the United Kingdom and Germany took part in the first year of the academy. The result is a digital campaign with personal stories for more cohesion and solidarity.

Read more

The Narrative Change Academy is funded by the Allianz Foundation and the Stiftung Mercator and co-funded by the European Union. The contact person is Jasemin Seven.