Get to Know The Three P’s:

"Push, Pull, and Personal Factors"

Identifying risk factors in radicalisation to violent extremism can be difficult. Mainly when there’s no clear meaning or starting point to analyze the issue. Thus, we will get to know The Three P’s. First, we need to agree on the definition of radicalisation as a path that can lead to acts of violence. Based on that focus here is on politically motivated acts such as terrorism or kidnappings.

Moreover, scholars found that at least three comprehensive factors lead to radicalisation. They are Push, Pull, and Personal Factors. Push factors are structural root causes of terrorism, such as state repression, poverty, relative deprivation, and injustice. While pull factors are related to aspects that can make an extremism lifestyle appealing, such as ideology, group dynamics, and other incentives. Lastly, personal factors are unique individual characteristics such as psychological disorders, personality traits, and traumatic life experiences.

According to Vergani et al., The Three P’s are interrelated and can stand on their own when it comes to creating extremist acts. For example, push factors such as unemployment can also cause personal (depression) and pull factors (material incentives or a sense of belonging to a group). However, The Three P’s can also provide a level of explanation of radicalisation into violent extremism. In addition, it also offers a different perspective for formulating measures or policies that can be taken by stakeholders to reintegrate radicalised individuals or groups back into society.

You can also access this studies on our library page at

Vergani, Matteo, Muhammad Iqbal, Ekin Ilbahar, and Greg Barton. “The Three PS of Radicalization: Push, Pull and Personal. A Systematic Scoping Review of the Scientific Evidence about Radicalization into Violent Extremism.” Studies in Conflict & Terrorism 43, no. 10 (2018): 854–54.