CRG 40/21-22: Testing the reliability and validity of the VERA-2R on individuals who have radicalised in Australia

Violent extremism risk assessment has become an important way of dealing with terrorism and violent extremists. One violent extremism risk assessment tool adopted for use in Australia is the Violent Extremism Risk Assessment—Version 2 Revised (VERA-2R). The VERA-2R captures risk and contextual indicators across five domains and background characteristics. Two trained assessors (the authors) completed VERA-2R risk assessments on a sample of 50 individuals identified as having radicalised to violent extremism in Australia. Patterns in risk factors across the sample were analysed, including testing the interrater reliability and predictive validity of the VERA-2R. Results showed differences in risk profiles between individuals who were violent and non-violent. It was found the VERA-2R had good interrater reliability but low predictive validity. Implications for research and the practice of risk assessment are considered. Limitations of the project design and sample are acknowledged.