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Title: Cross-community cohesion : dimensions and dynamics of contemporary integration policies
Author: Ahmed, Samiul Parvez
ISNI:       0000 0004 2734 7346
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 2012
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UK integration policies were fundamentally transformed when the former Labour Government replaced the philosophy of 'multiculturalism' with the policy of 'community cohesion'. The retreat from multiculturalism was based on the perception that the policy creates 'separateness' between communities by focusing on the different ways of life of the various ethnic communities. As the integration policy shifted towards a 'Community Cohesion Agenda' (CCA), it became focused on regeneration of community values through building strong cross-community ties. However, this shift has caused controversy among, not only academics, but also ethnic minorities on the ground. It is alleged that some aspects of the rationale and mechanisms of the community cohesion approach are questionable. In particular, it is noted that the CCA focuses on the race, ethnicity and religion of immigrants to the UK. In the light of these recent debates, this thesis explores and assesses the foundations, rationale, and mechanisms of the CCA by analysing some 'community cohesion' policy interventions in the Bangladeshi community of Aston, Birmingham. From the research, it appears that there is a great deal of confusion among the policy actors in the field regarding the fundamental conception of 'community cohesion' and its approaches and mechanisms. In addition, it appears that the CCA is based on some contested perceptions regarding the multi cultural communities of the UK. In many cases, the CCA is considered to be assimilatory and, even, biased against particular ethnic minority groups (e.g. South Asian Muslims). Moreover, the research reveals specific failings of the CCA. For example, failure to understand the inherent complexities of ethnic minority communities and inadequate handling of various issues that beset disadvantaged communities (e.g. gender dynamics, youth provision). Thus, the research advocates for a broader agenda, the multiple inequality agenda, with an objective to counter all inequalities.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available