There has been an enormous amount of academic and policy work on the integration of minority cultural communities, especially certain Muslim communities, into ‘mainstream’ society in the last decade. Our task in this briefing is to outline a potential new approach, one that we call 'everyday integration'.
We believe that this approach, grounded in new academic work, provides a better way of both analysing and advancing the possibilities for the integration of different communities into a stable social order.
In academia, most work on integration has focused on supposed conflicts of values between minority communities and western liberalism, and the difficulties that these conflicts create for social life in European countries. Many of these debates have moved from academia into policy discourse, stemming from such events as the French headscarf controversy and the security implications of radicalisation and extremism.
For over a decade, this debate has been characterised by a simple choice between, on the one hand, a multicultural group-rights approach popular in much of the academic community and, on the other hand, an increasingly assimilative approach focused on developing a stronger sense of shared citizenship and national identity, which is popular among much of the policy community. It is our contention that both of these models are mistaken.
We propose that future work on the best ways of integrating minority communities into broader society should focus on everyday integration, that is, on sites where identities are constructed and reconstructed and where new possibilities of group allegiance are continually developed. In this briefing, we have suggest that four potential areas for further exploration in this regard are:
- early-years childcare
- shopping and consumption
- leisure activities
- supplementary education.
Difficult practical, ethical and scholarly questions remain, but we believe that 'everyday integration' provides the possibility of a crucial new start for work in this vital policy area.
You may be interested in...
IPPR in the news
Ed Cox on Why London is such a powerful force in the UK (2.55 in)
BBC Today - 04 Mar 2014The north holds the key to a better economy
Manchester Everning News - 04 Mar 2014Net migration soars despite Cameron's pledge
Daily Telegraph - 28 Feb 2014NEET generation
The Independent - 27 Feb 2014
More BBC indie commissions, report says
Radio Today - 27 Feb 2014BBC boss wants to extend licence fee to cover iPlayer
Daily Mirror - 27 Feb 2014Scotland: Vote 'Yes' and lose the BBC
The Independent - 27 Feb 2014Indy Scotland would be a vote to “leave” the BBC
The Scotsman - 27 Feb 2014
Tony Hall: extend licence fee to cover iPlayer
The Guardian - 27 Feb 2014Maria Miller says independent Scotland would lose the BBC
The Guardian - 27 Feb 2014Hall vows to protect drama under further cost-cutting
The Stage - 27 Feb 2014Hall proposes licence fee extension to include iPlayer
BBC News Online - 27 Feb 2014
Harman at OMC: 'Daily Mail should apologise'
The Guardian - 27 Feb 2014Time to break London's grip on creative industries
BBC Wales Today - 25 Feb 2014UK's creative industries 'must back regional and ethnic diversity'
The Guardian - 25 Feb 2014Creative industries need to be freed from London's 'closed shop'
WalesOnline - 25 Feb 2014
Track changes - IPPR North on transport spend
The Economist - 25 Feb 2014Tony Hall: top-slicing would undermine whole TV industry
Broadcast Magazine - 25 Feb 2014Affordable childcare would boost economy
BBC News Online - 23 Feb 2014IPPR report makes case for universal childcare
Nursery World - 23 Feb 2014