Towards intercultural engagement: building shared visions of neighbourhood and community in an era of new migration

PHILLIPS, Deborah, ATHWAL, Bal, ROBINSON, David and HARRISON, Malcolm (2013). Towards intercultural engagement: building shared visions of neighbourhood and community in an era of new migration. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 40 (1), 42-59.

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Concerns about the consequences of new migration for good community relations have brought calls for bridge-building between apparently disconnected groups through greater social contact, intercultural dialogue and co-operation at the local scale. Although several initiatives have sought to build stronger relations between new and settled groups in the UK, we know relatively little about the impact of these encounters on those involved or their effectiveness in promoting good relations. In this paper, we explore the potential to erode perceived differences between diverse groups through dialogue around shared neighbourhood and community concerns. Drawing on interview and observational data in Bradford, our findings suggest that intercultural dialogue facilitates mutual learning and presents an opportunity to negotiate socially constructed group boundaries, unsettle racialised, gendered and class-based understandings of self' and other', and challenge emotions, myths and stereotypes that can underpin everyday animosities between new and settled residents. However, the capacity for co-operation around neighbourhood issues was found to differ within and between populations, reflecting complexities of identification, affiliation and belonging. Furthermore, bridge-building exercises between vulnerable new migrants and established groups with a stronger political voice and social rights may not be able to compensate for unfavourable dynamics of power between them.

Item Type: Article
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Centre for Regional Economic and Social Research
Identification Number:
Page Range: 42-59
Depositing User: Ann Betterton
Date Deposited: 12 Dec 2014 16:15
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2021 23:30

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