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Towards a More Pragmatic Multi-Culturalism? How the UK policy community sees the future of ethnic diversity policies

Taylor-Gooby, Peter, Waite, Edmund (2014) Towards a More Pragmatic Multi-Culturalism? How the UK policy community sees the future of ethnic diversity policies. Governance, 27 (2). pp. 267-289. ISSN 0855-2460. (doi:10.1111/gove.12030) (KAR id:48587)


Multiculturalism as the dominant approach to managing diversity in the UK has been called into question by politicians, community leaders and academics in recent years. This paper reports interviews about multiculturalism, social cohesion and future directions in policy with leading figures in the debate, including members of the Home Affairs Select Committee, authors of major reports, experts, researchers and academics. The attitudes expressed do not fit the traditional left-centre-right dimension of British politics but, in most cases, indicate unease at the assumed segregative effects of current policy when discussing overall policy directions. However, when specific issues (sharia law, faith schooling, dress and diet codes, political representation) are considered the viewpoints of most of those interviewed are more pragmatic, leading to an incremental approach to future directions in policy. Relatively few respondents, again not typified by party allegiance, advocate strong policies to impose British values or move decisively away from a general multiculturalist stance. The transition most widely supported would be from stronger to weaker multiculturalism rather than from multiculturalism to a different approach to diversity.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1111/gove.12030
Uncontrolled keywords: Multiculturalism; ethnic diversity; future policy; interculturalism; British identity;
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
Divisions: Divisions > Division for the Study of Law, Society and Social Justice > School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research
Depositing User: Peter Taylor-Gooby
Date Deposited: 20 May 2015 16:09 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2021 13:24 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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