Anti-Terror Lessons of American Muslim Communities in Buffalo, New York, Houston, Texas, Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina, and Seattle, Washington, 2008-2009 (ICPSR 26921)

Principal Investigator(s): Schanzer, David, Duke University. Sanford School of Public Policy; Kurzman, Charles, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. Department of Sociology; Moosa, Ebrahim, Duke University. Department of Religion

Summary:

In the aftermath of the attacks on September 11, 2001, and subsequent terrorist attacks elsewhere around the world, a key counterterrorism concern was the possible radicalization of Muslims living in the United States. The purpose of the study was to examine and identify characteristics and practices of four American Muslim communities that have experienced varying levels of radicalization. The communities were selected because they were home to Muslim-Americans that had experienced isolated instances of radicalization. They were located in four distinct regions of the United States, and they each had distinctive histories and patterns of ethnic diversity.

This objective was mainly pursued through interviews of over 120 Muslims located within four different Muslim-American communities across the country (Buffalo, New York; Houston, Texas; Seattle, Washington; and Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina), a comprehensive review of studies an literature on Muslim-American communities, a review of websites and publications of Muslim-American organizations and a compilation of data on prosecutions of Muslim-Americans on violent terrorism-related offenses.

Access Notes

  • One or more files in this data collection have special restrictions ; consult the restrictions note to learn more. You can apply online for access to the restricted-use data. A login is required to apply.

    Due to the sensitive nature of the data and to protect respondent confidentiality, the data are restricted from general dissemination. They may only be accessed at the ICPSR Data Enclave in Ann Arbor, MI. Users wishing to view these data must complete an Application for Use of the ICPSR Data Enclave (available for download as part of the documentation for this study), and receive permission to analyze the files before traveling to Ann Arbor. More general information about the Enclave may be found at ICPSR's Enclave Data Web site.

    Any public-use data files in this collection are available for access by the general public. Access does not require affiliation with an ICPSR member institution.

Dataset(s)

DS0:  Study-Level Files
DS1:  Buffalo Interview Data
Download:
No downloadable data files available.
DS2:  Houston Interview Data
Download:
No downloadable data files available.
DS3:  Raleigh-Durham Interview Data
Download:
No downloadable data files available.
DS4:  Seattle Interview Data
Download:
No downloadable data files available.

Study Description

Citation

Schanzer, David, Charles Kurzman, and Ebrahim Moosa. Anti-Terror Lessons of American Muslim Communities in Buffalo, New York, Houston, Texas, Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina, and Seattle, Washington, 2008-2009. ICPSR26921-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2015-02-27. https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR26921.v1

Persistent URL: https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR26921.v1

Export Citation:

  • RIS (generic format for RefWorks, EndNote, etc.)
  • EndNote XML (EndNote X4.0.1 or higher)

Funding

This study was funded by:

  • United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. National Institute of Justice (2007-IJ-CX-0008)

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    Muslims, perceptions, radicalism, religion, states (USA), terrorism

Smallest Geographic Unit:    city

Geographic Coverage:    Buffalo, Durham, Houston, New York (state), North Carolina, Raleigh, Seattle, Texas, United States, Washington

Time Period:   

  • 2007--2009

Date of Collection:   

  • 2008--2009

Unit of Observation:    Individual

Universe:    The Muslim-American population in Buffalo, New York; Houston, Texas; Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina; and Seattle, Washington between 2008 and 2009.

Data Type(s):    survey data

Data Collection Notes:

This data collection includes interview data collected from 120 individuals in Buffalo, New York, Houston, Texas, Seattle, Washington and Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina between 2008 and 2009. A total of 117 data files are available as part of the collection. Dataset 1 (Buffalo, New York Interview Data) includes 34 interview files. Dataset 2 (Houston, Texas Interview Data) includes 30 interview files. Dataset 3 (Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina Interview Data) includes 23 interview files and Dataset 4 (Seattle, Washington Interview Data) includes 30 interview files. All data are available as plain text (.txt) and Portable Document Format (PDF) files.

This data collection does not include the data on prosecutions of Muslim-Americans on violent terrorism-related offenses. Users are encouraged to see the final report associated with this study for more information on that data.

There was one interview in the Buffalo Interview Data folder that is not available as part of the collection due to lack of signed consent.

Methodology

Study Purpose:    The purpose of the study was to identify characteristics and practices in the Muslim-American community that are preventing radicalization. The goal was to learn how Muslim-American communities have been dealing with the threat of radicalization and acts of violence to themselves as well as the broader American community posed by extremist ideologies.

Study Design:   

The study analyzed religious texts (written, audio, and video) produced by the four communities, engaged in ethnographic field research at religious and civic organizations in these communities, and conducted in-depth interviews with 30 community leaders and members in each community. The study also compiled arrest data and reviewed other sources; however, the main data collection effort was the interviews that were conducted in the research sites.

The field research sites were selected because they are home to mid-sized communities of Muslim-Americans that had experienced isolated instances of radicalization. They are located in four distinct regions of the United States, and they each have distinctive histories and patterns of ethnic diversity. Research sites were Buffalo, New York; Houston, Texas; Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina; and Seattle, Washington. The study deliberately avoided studying the largest Muslim-American communities, such as in Detroit or New York, because these locations have been the subject of considerable study, and because they have more Islamic organizations than our project would be able to contact during the grant period.

Sample:   

Muslim-American community leaders and community members from Buffalo, Houston, Raleigh-Durham, and Seattle were interviewed in the study. For each of the four research sites, the project compiled a list of all Muslim-American organizations in the metropolitan area, based on websites, directories, and personal contacts. The project reviewed as many print and electronic publications associated with these organizations as could be obtained. During the fieldwork portion of the project, the project contacted as many of these organizations as possible and requested interviews with organizational leaders and members, as well as with other individuals in the local Muslim-American community.

No one who was interested in being interviewed was turned down. In addition, the project sought to have interviewees within each Muslim-American community who varied along the following dimensions: gender, with special efforts to interview women; age, with special efforts to interview older and younger adults; ethnicity and nationality, with special attention to interview African-Americans, Arabs, and South Asians; immigration status, with special attention to interview the children of immigrants; organization type, with special attention to interview members of both religious and nonreligious organizations.

Time Method:    Cross-sectional

Weight:    Not Applicable

Mode of Data Collection:    face-to-face interview

Description of Variables:    Questions that were asked focused on demographics, identifying what were the main issues for the community, for America, and for countering radicalization. For a complete description of the questions asked, refer to the Data Collection Instrument that is available for download on the study home page.

Response Rates:    Not Applicable

Presence of Common Scales:    none

Version(s)

Original ICPSR Release:   2015-02-27

Related Publications

Utilities

Metadata Exports

If you're looking for collection-level metadata rather than an individual metadata record, please visit our Metadata Records page.

Download Statistics