The consortium consists of 6 partners from 4 countries (Greece, Italy, Portugal, Norway ) – 2 Universities (Panteion University, Greece, OSLOMET – STORBYUNIVERSITETET, Norway ), 1 public entity branch of the Greek Ministry of Education (Western Attica Administrative Office) and 3 NGO’s (OXFAM ITALIA ONLUS, Italy, ACTION AID HELLAS ASTIKI MI KERDOSKOPIKI ETAIRIA, Greece, 4CHANGE COOPERATIVA CULTURAL E DE SOLIDARIEDADE SOCIAL CRL, Portugal).
Panteion University is the leading organization and the Laboratory of Experimental and Applied Behavior Analysis, a government chartered unit of the Department of Psychology of the Panteion University of Social and Political Sciences is the coordinator of the project.
In most European Member States racist violence in the form of verbal abuse or graffiti or harassment or vandalism or physical assault or even murder remains common and persistent. This is also reflected in education as according to evidence, racism in class is a persistent issue, in particular in areas where majority and minority social groups co-exist. Existing interventions to prevent and address racism in schools are based on punishment, which is ineffective according to experimental and applied behavior analysis. Specifically:
1. When intervention programs are implemented the racist behavior has already been established since the shaping of the behavior starts even before our birth.
2. The measures taken against racist violence and racist discourse are not consistent and are not based on scientific laws of behavior. They are “tricks” which are employed randomly because we think that it is logical to work or because they have worked in other cases of undesired behaviors. The usefulness of our approach in overcoming these drawbacks is the fact that all kinds of behaviors can be explained, investigated, predicted and altered based on the same principles.
3. According to our approach punishment is partly the cause of racism and it might intensify it. Our approach is based on shaping desirable behavior by employing techniques which are based on the principle of reinforcement.