Exploring Multiculturalism and Interculturality

Exploring Multiculturalism and Interculturality

Issued: Fri, 27 Oct 2017 11:12:00 BST

‌Exploring Multiculturalism and Interculturality


The theme for the 2017 Universitas 21 Early Career Researcher Workshop was “Interculturality and Multiculturalism: The Challenges for Changing Societies.” The event, run from 4 to 6 October 2017, was hosted by the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile in Santiago, Chile. The workshop gathered 51 early career delegates from 17 countries engaged in the Universitas 21 Network. The event included a series of presentations coordinated by Professor Roberto Gonzáles and Professor Hanna Zagefka, short presentations from the delegates and workshop sessions to facilitate the development of research links and future international projects. The delegates represented a series of disciplines, ranging from neuroscience to engineering, health and care services, sociology, psychology, and linguistics. The participants were also able to learn about the activities of the Center for Intercultural and Indigenous Research, as well as the Center for Social Conflict and Cohesion Studies.


The University of Glasgow was represented by two delegates: Dr. Lavinia Hirsu, School of Education, and Dr. Claire Bynner, Research Associate in Public Service Reform. Dr. Hirsu shared her experience of working with the Scottish Refugee Council on the project “Sharing Lives, Sharing Languages”. The project focussed on creative pathways towards social and language integration and proposed a model for working with multilingual citizens in a variety of contexts and across all levels of proficiency in English. Dr Bynner discussed the findings from her PhD research on social contact and trust in a super-diverse neighbourhood. She described various ways of seeking ‘unity in diversity’ at a local level including community dialogue, collective action, practical activities, and small acts of kindness and cooperation between neighbours. Both presentations were very well received as they proposed new ways of thinking about “doing” multiculturalism and interculturality.


As a way of sharing the rich conversations from this workshop, Dr. Hirsu and Dr. Bynner are currently planning a university-level workshop for early career researchers. The workshop will give the two organisers the opportunity to share some of the key themes and conversations from the workshop in Chile that will help move forward current discussions around multiculturalism and interculturality. The second goal of the workshop is to connect early career researchers from the University of Glasgow across the disciplines with local stakeholders in order to shape the future research agenda around these themes. The event is scheduled for January 16th, 2:30-4:30 p.m. More information will soon be available. If you are an early career researcher (within 8 years from earning your PhD) and have an interest in these themes, do not hesitate to sign up for this event!

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