JIK was founded in 2011 to create a counternarrative of a young generation that perceives pluralism and diversity as a normal reality.
JIK is neither a religious project, nor a forum for Muslims only. The aim of JIK is to address differences and accept diversity, and the project is also about belonging.
JIK is more than a conference. It is a network of over 500 former conference participants from all over Germany who are actively engaged throughout the course of the year.
The Young Islam Conference (JIK) is a dialogue platform and empowerment space for young people to discuss how to live together in a migration society – constructively and equally. JIK approaches the topic of Islam in Germany in various ways, carrying out educational work and facilitating changes in perspectives between young people from different backgrounds and experiences.
At JIK, young people who are socially and structurally disadvantaged and whose voices and perspectives are being marginalised find spaces to empower each other, communicate their needs and become active together. Those who are not affected by racism can become allies by being aware of such disadvantages, their own privileges and the responsibility that comes with these privileges to act.
Debates on Islam, Muslims and social issues such as participation, belonging and plurality are worked on together, and new ideas are brought to the public discourse. With these alliances between young people, post-migrant (self-)images can be developed where differences are celebrated and radical diversity is lived.
The Young Islam Conference began in 2011 in Berlin as a project of Humboldt University and the Mercator Foundation. Since October 2019, JIK has been a project of the Schwarzkopf Foundation Young Europe.
Discussing a migration society:
The annual JIK Federal Conferencebrings together 40 young people with different backgrounds and experiences from all over Germany. In a programme lasting several days, participants discuss Germany as a country of immigration, and the opportunities and challenges for young people in a migrant society. Islam-related topics are discussed in workshops with experts, and every year has a core, topical theme.
Changing the discourse:
Based on the concept of TED Talks, JIK Talks follow such an innovative format. JIK Talks are based on an idea from the JIK Committee (JIK Gremium) and try to illuminate Islam-related debates in different, constructive ways. JIK Talks are about going beyond clichés, stereotypical images and perceived truths by offering new perspectives and talking to each other at the same level.
Shaping the media:
Islam and Muslims are constantly the subject of media coverage. Not infrequently, this results in stereotypical portrayals that make young Muslims feel misrepresented. For this reason, the JIK has launched the Media Academy, in which it specifically encourages media-savvy network members to learn how to work with different media.
Creating new narratives
In the Narrative Change Academy, the first Europe-wide format of the JIK, young Europeans shape discourses on the topic of „Islam in Europe“. Based on the narrative change approach, the participants develop a digital campaign to advocate for our vision of an inclusive, postmigrant and pro-European society. For the time being, young people between the ages of 18 and 27 from France, the United Kingdom and Germany can take part.
The Summer Academy, newly established in 2020, is a training format for JIK. The Summer Academy is a collective learning space with the aim of enabling multipliers to delve deeper into key topics, applying what they have learned in their own life contexts and passing their knowledge on to others. The training is mostly aimed for the young network but is also open to newcomers.