The European Union is home to over 33.5 million people born outside the EU. In addition, the most recent Eurostat figures, show there are 17.3 million citizens who have switched their country of residence within the EU.

Like it or not, the EU’s member states are ethnically and culturally mixed, and the trend is growing. Demand for migrant workers to fill gaps in local labour markets is set to rise as Europe’s population ages. Conflict to the east and south is forcing more refugees to seek safety in the EU – the number of asylum applications rose by 44 percent increase to 625,000 in 2014. How can European countries adapt to these changes in the population mix? How best to deal with the growing cultural diversity?

Such questions are major electoral issues.

Parties on the radical right have successfully exploited concerns over integration. Mainstream politicians, including Angela Merkel and David Cameron, have criticized the multicultural model, but attempts at enforced assimilation are blamed for alienating minority groups, fueling discontent and marginalization.

We put together an infographic explaining the characteristics of the different models of integration (click on the image for a bigger version).


Can the new ideas of interculturalism provide an answer? Is it possible to strike a balance by encouraging links between different groups within a shared society; promoting integration and commitment to core values, while respecting minority identities? 

We asked Daniel De Torres Barderi, former Commissioner for Immigration and Interculturality at the city of Barcelona, for his views on the interculturalism debate:

Paulo wrote in to Debating Europe to suggest immigrants should be expected to adopt the laws and culture of their host country.

We put his ideas to Christy Burke, Lord Mayor of Dublin, who explained how the Irish capital has been working to share best practice with other cities through the Council of Europe’s Intercultural cities programme. He stressed the benefits of developing mutual respect among newcomers and established communities.

BurkeI have to say, that in my experience with the new Irish communities, that they do abide by our law and by our culture and they certainly appreciate how we respect their religious faiths and beliefs, that goes without saying. I live next door to four Polish girls, they are probably the best neighbours I’ve had in my life. They are great, they’re terrific, they feed my dog when I’m away, they keep an eye on the house. They are great neighbours and that’s how it is in the city.

We also put this question to Daniel De Torres Barderi. How would he reply?

Writing from France, Irena pointed to research that shows people who have positive and enriching experiences with other cultures are more likely to embrace diversity.

citizen_icon_180x180Research shows that if people have positive and enriching experiences with other cultures then they are more likely to embrace diversity. So, the question is, what specific policies can be adopted in schools and other public spaces to ensure that people’s experiences with other cultures are mostly positive?

For a response, we turned to Mirna Safi, Research Fellow at the Institut d’études politiques de Paris, better known as Science Po. What did she think of Irena’s question?

SafiIn order to promote a positive experience of diversity, the state should avoid defining in a strict way, norms and values as being superior. This is very relevant for the French case, especially nowadays with the debate about the veil and the importance of laicity in schools. These values are supposed to be colourblind, but actually they are not, since they represent specific groups in the French society – increasingly we see this in France – and they basically stigmatize specific groups. In that sense, the only way to promote a positive view of diversity in the public space is to celebrate the value of diversity and multiculturalism in a way to preserve ethnic specificity, and at the same time to avoid putting forward the superiority of one model compared to another.

What is the best way to ensure harmony in our diverse societies? Is interculturalism the way ahead? Let us know your thoughts and comments in the form below, and we’ll take them to policy-makers and experts for their reactions!

IMAGE CREDITS: CC / Flickr – Sascha Kohlmann

237 comments Post a commentcomment

  1. avatar
    Ivan Burrows


    ‘assimilation’ is the natural order, ‘interculturalism’ is just more meaningless political claptrap ‘invented’ to appease the masses as the policy of forced integration is implemented.

    • avatar

      I would be interested in supporting evidence for this claim. Thanks

  2. avatar
    Parászka Máté

    Ivan Burrow, i’m a minority member and trust me assimilation dosn’t realy work, i mean for some few people who chose it, but for big masses it’s not a solution.

    • avatar
      Tarquin Farquhar

      @Parászka Máté
      I’m a minority member – I’m non-white born and bred in the UK BUT I’ve assimilated.

      What is YOUR problem!

    • avatar

      Assilmilation is flawed at the conceptual level: what are people expected to assimilate into? There are massive differences between regional and even local cultures in most countries, not to speak about differences between cities and rural areas or between generations. The assimilation doctrine assumes that there is one uniform national culture throughout. This only works for propaganda purposes.

    • avatar
      Tarquin Farquhar

      Your assimilation doctrine assumption is too Borg-esque for serious consideration.

  3. avatar
    Christos Mouzeviris

    You can never fully assimilate someone, especially if you don’t give this individual the same rights, or you keep reminding them that they are different. So if we want multicultural multiethnic societies, we better realise that we can never have a nation state, a single culture and one point of view in our countries. Be realistic!

    • avatar
      Tarquin Farquhar

      @Christos Mouzeviris

    • avatar

      Fully agree, Christos!

    • avatar
      Tarquin Farquhar

      @Christos Mouzeviris
      It looks like Irena agrees with me too.

    • avatar
      Jhon Smith

      A single culture does not necessarily mean a society reminiscent of a hive mind (where all individuals part of the hive posses one perspective and only one perspective), but one that has all individuals share common ideals and values (backed by traditions) that serve to both unify society, and serve as collective “adaptations” towards the problems a society may face or has faced. These are called “national goals”.

      What many others also fail to realize is that the contact theory is an obsolete theory used to justify federal cultural pluralism and “mutual tolerance” (which the entire ideology revolves around). When in reality the onset of the internet has resulted in digital contact between different cultures while remaining protected and preserved in their respective geographical homelands.

      Half the entire idea of assimilation is also about who you let in. Technology can now allow us to “screen” various individuals candidates for immigration and let in those who are most likely to integrate and assimilate. Which is where it all begins. Preventing migrants from settling in areas with a high concentration of their ethnicity/culture, selecting those most likely to behave and acculturate themselves without too much hassle for citizenship and permanent residency, and keeping reasonable numbers of foreign – born in your nation (without going overboard) combined with education on other cultures, simulated contact, protection of individual rights and nationalist public policy should result in relatively smooth assimilation.

  4. avatar
    Jason Cotterill-Attaway

    Assimilation has been the European way since before the Ancient Greeks.

    Oh, and im of two minority groups, both of which were targetted under the last European Regime.

  5. avatar
    Dimitris Stamiris

    NO WAY !!!!! Every country MUST be unique …. Other why you talking about GERMANYS dream and that is EUROPEAN COUNTRIES (workers) OF GERMANY !!

    • avatar
      Tarquin Farquhar

      @Dimitris Stamiris
      That may be true in the EUROZONE!

  6. avatar
    Paul X

    You should start by asking why people move to another country in the first place?. In most cases it is for a better job and quality of life, in which case you should be prepared to make some sacrifices, one of which is you accept the culture and laws of the county you move to

    Nobody should be able to “have their cake and eat it” by moving to another country for a better life whilst refusing to adapt to the culture of that country

    You probably find that the culture of the country they leave is what contributes to it being such a mess in the first place, yet they expect to bring this culture with them into a new country?…that really makes sense doesn’t it…not

    • avatar
      Tarquin Farquhar

      @Paul X
      WELL SAID!!

    • avatar

      I totally agree with you! Assimilation is the way

  7. avatar
    catherine benning

    Here is a trailer of a Channel 4 documentary aired recently on our TV. It will surprise you. Watch it and hope.



    Unfortunately Channel 4 does not have the full documentary to put up here. Which is very sad as it was not just this clip and it was interesting and open.

    However this is what followed that documentary as a TV show. It is an eye opener to what is really going on.


  8. avatar
    Τάσος Σολδάτος

    well…interculturalism is not something bad for europe if it comes with respect and cooperation. The assimilation reduces the chance of no respect and no cooperation but we can still work into a way of keeping our traditions and growing peacefully.

  9. avatar
    Nando Aidos

    Either is useless unless there are initiatives to implement the desired result. But in my experience there will alwyas be both. Those who grew up in a different society will only assimilate to a point. Their children, however, will most likely fully assimilate. And while there are new people crossing the borders one has to accept and understand the need for both situations – assimilation AND interculturalism.

  10. avatar
    John Zervas

    Interculturalism is not a unifying model of migration policy. You cannot expect a small country like Greece to receive 40% of its indeginous population as immigrants in the span of 10 years to suddenly accept them. Interculturalism is good only situationally. USA can become intercultural because it has all the means. It only lacks political will. Greece on the other hand cannot go intercultural not even with sectoral policy. The greek public, just like any public will develop negative feelings when it feels threatened by gigantic immigrant populations. Adding interculturalism in the mix, giving this illegally established population political power will result to extreme reactions such as civil war or genocide. It’s that simple. Interculturalism is for the ones who are luxurious enought to apply it. I am not against it, in fact I am in favor of it. But as a concious citizen and political analyst I guarantee that interculturalism is not something that comes top down but should always be done bottom up. It should be a concious willing choice of the portion of the people who have the political and voting power. Any other way will result to chaos and misfortune for both immigrants and indigenous people.

  11. avatar
    Miguel Vieira

    white genocide, population replacement by higher immigration numbers, is amazing observing what is going on in most of EU countries, is the deliberate destruction of Europe, thanks EU politicians..

    • avatar
      Tarquin Farquhar

      @Miguel Vieira
      White genocide?!?

    • avatar
      Tarquin Farquhar

      @Yannick Cornet
      My Canadian friends think that the French speakers are spongers and prone to corruption.

      The same can be said regarding the British and the French.

  12. avatar
    Luis Garzon

    My position is that Assimilation today is impossible because thanks to widespread travelling and new media no one has the power required to impose a single cultural model, not even nation states.
    On the other hand, Multiculturalism has to be nuanced via policies towards intercultural contact and communication. These policies should be made by non-partisan organisations that are able to develop independent policies that cannot be appropiated by a single group (e.g. SOS Racism).

    • avatar

      No, “non-partizan organizations” have an agenda as any party, it’s imposible to be impartial, it has to go through the normal process of the law, no exceptions, only the representation of the people will can choose which policies are better.

  13. avatar
    Maria Helena Neto

    We the portuguese are a result of All the races, cultures and believes of most of the world peoples and I think that we have learned how to handle it.

    • avatar
      Tarquin Farquhar

      @Maria Helena Neto

      Portugal is renowned for its corruption.

      A few years ago in the UK a Channel 4 documentary cited the Portuguese as one of the worst groups for taking more out of the state [benefits] than they give [taxes].

  14. avatar
    Adri Hulshoff

    What is wrong with a multicultural society where we live apart together as we did for the last 50 years? Respect for each others identity, habits, religion and if you want to be/live intercultural, because you want to or assimilate, because you want to, you’re more then welcome!!

    • avatar
      Tarquin Farquhar

      @Christiane Vermoortel
      The UK without its CHINATOWNS would be horrendous.

  15. avatar
    Pirjo Niemenmaa

    The lack of knowledge, ignorance or indifference of existing academic research on migration and acculturation among politicians and media people annoys me immensely.

    Over the decades social psychologists and other social scientists defined acculturation strategies leading to 4 types of identities; a) assimilation was supposed to lead to a strong national identity (and forgetting all about the past culture), b) separation was supposed to lead to strong ethnic identity (not learning about the new country). c) an indifferent attitude to both old and new culture was supposed to lead to marginalized identity, and d) learning about the new culture while also acknowledging and respecting the old culture was supposed to lead to bi-cultural or integrated identity.

    The so called multiculturalism has often been understood as simple separation; letting ethnic minorities live their separate life in the new country.

    Assimilation in my opinion leads to psychological problems, because it expects the migrants to ‘forget’ about their past. It creates problems both for the first generation and their offspring (who obviously don’t learn anything about their grandparents or about the past life of their parents.

    There is no point in demanding assimilation OR integration from the migrants as long as the migrants are excluded from all shared activities or of citizenship with the host population.

    Not only migrnats of Asian or African origin need to acculturate but also Europeans who move from one European country to another. or North Americans who move to Britain…

    • avatar

      fully agree: you cannot expect people to forget or negate their origins and lack of respect for these origins calls for lack of respect back. Interculturalism is about reciprocity and power sharing.

    • avatar
      Stephen Pockley

      No thanks

  16. avatar
    Ruben Graça

    no interculturalism is utopia that had failed a long ti.e the moment they attempt to upstage their culture and local etnic economic in accordande of dismantle of the european interrest people…. thats why right and left wings parties are rising in eurore besides having chancr to seize power

  17. avatar
    Aurora Roy

    Every country has foreigners! Name a country that has NONE !!! Even the poorest country on earth ,,has FOREIGNERS !! BECAUSE NO MAN IS AN ISLAND !!!!

  18. avatar
    Luca Argalia

    Multicultural society is bigger Bullshit that I saw in my life, every country have keep his values and identity

    • avatar
      Tarquin Farquhar

      @Luca Argalia
      The Club med countries NEED to change.
      They need to address their endemic levels of corruption at the VERY least!

    • avatar

      First, I would be curious how you define the values and identity of a country (apart from what is written in law)
      second, societies change and evolve, this is inevitable, but they should be aware of the process and manage it rather than pretending they can stop it

    • avatar
      Tarquin Farquhar

      First, I would be curious why you find it curious how you define…blah, blah, blah…

      Second – thank you for a statement of the bleeding obvious.

  19. avatar
    Toni Muñiz

    No, look how well its going. Big mayority do not integrate, and specially muslims, even when they are born in EU.

    • avatar
      Tarquin Farquhar

      @Toni Muñiz
      Oy! Not ALL Muslims isolate themselves, only a minority.

      Please THINK carefully before posting!

  20. avatar
    Jaume Roqueta

    I would say crhistians is the big problem in europe… as the universe gets cold, there is more structure and diversity… this is a physical and mathematical law that will not be a choice. As the intercontetions between people grows they form groups and domains. The only isotropic regimes are fascism (low temperatures with only one domain)  or the primitive society of monkey (high temperatures, small correlations)… 

    • avatar
      Tarquin Farquhar

      @Jaume Roqueta

    • avatar

      I like this way of putting it LOL

  21. avatar
    Il Cast

    Thats a big lie and people know it they dont want to integrate they want to rape steal and impose themselves.

  22. avatar
    catherine benning

    Here is a short article written for the Independent newspaprer in the UK today. Every man in Europe should read it and take on board the future as it really is going to be.


    The citizens of all countries get the politicians they deserve. Effeminate men and masculine women are creating a Europe that will be eaten alive. And every single one of us are to blame for it.

  23. avatar
    eusebio manuel vestias pecurto

    in my professional life worked with many world cultures liked and I think we all leam a multicultural society of freedroms and guarantees of all European citizens

  24. avatar

    Interculturalism and assimilation have to constitute the society’s mainstay for growing human being.

  25. avatar
    EU reform- proactive

    Limited & limiting choices! The deck of the Commissions’ printed social cards are neither properly shuffled nor cut- just dealt- full of Chokers without any liberating Joker!

    Are we to accept to be kept spell bound & in check (mate) by the EU Commission’s dissemination of fear of an aging population- to justify the opening of the global human sluice gates- wanted, needed or not?

    Why not absorb & invest- in an orderly manner- in all surplus European unemployed & employable folks first- before promoting the fear and a stampede of an Europe soon going extinct? A weaker Euro will assist as well.

    The future of robotics, innovation & higher productivity will create more redundancies and negate the fear of extinction. I wish for an “electronic & driver-less” governance- saving at least 75% politicians!

    • avatar
      Prince du Sang

      dealing with it=acceptance

  26. avatar
    Ciprian Anghel

    I think illegal imigrants should not have rights to stay in the European Union. and i am talking about non-Europeans that are coming in our continent in illegal situations.

  27. avatar
    Ivan Burrows


    Simple, leave the antidemocratic EU & take back control of our own destiny.

    Problem solved.

    • avatar

      Your destiny is to accept migrants because someone need to work to produce and pay for the pensions of ageing Europeans. The UK economy will collapse without migrants/

  28. avatar
    Dimitris Stamiris

    They want European Union to be Islam !!!!!
    But wen Islam people start “want” and wen they start kill than you ll all realize that cannot fit to eu … But than will be late !!!!!

    People from Islam born 5-8 kids .. What you think will happened in 20-40 years Wen we born 1 or 2 ???

    Think !!!

  29. avatar
    Costin Halaicu

    Personally, I find multicultural societies like Canada to be the best way to deal with multiple minorities.

  30. avatar
    Vinko Rajic

    I don’t have any special national thing but yes I like to have international restaurants . I don’t care for national identities and folklore . I care for democracy and human development .

  31. avatar
    Toni Muñiz

    Like it or not. LOL thats great. We really have no choice as it is pushed upon us, like it or not.

  32. avatar
    Harald Heidegger

    EU should become an social market economy. With equal social standards throughout all members. Many migrate from east to west because of the higher social standards.

  33. avatar
    Carles Manrique Pérez

    Just kick the muslims out, I have no problem with the rest because they usually to integrate. Also, I do not consider migration between european/eurasian countries as immigration.

    • avatar

      In many countries in the South of Europe Muslims have lived for centuries and there have been no issues except when the religious divides have been instrumentalised politically: do not fall prey to manipulation

  34. avatar
    Armin Ibrisimovic

    We are humans, and all with the same problems and wishes. Why “deal” with it. Just embrace the “Outsiders” and they will be established.

  35. avatar
    Miguel Vieira

    Like it or not, the EU?s member states are ethnically and culturally mixed. How best to deal with this growing cultural diversity? (All tyrants do the same, make the question and give the answer)

  36. avatar

    Assimilation for me, as I like to see my own culture around me where I live. People that choose to come and live amongst us should show respect and appreciation for our cultural heritage and comply with it. Personally, I find the face veil offensive.

  37. avatar

    I would say multiculturalism. I don’t really understand why my neighbour identifying him or herself as for example french would affect my possibility to identify myself as an Arsenal supporter, fisherman, finn or what have you. As long as equality, openness and tolerance are part of society’s core values.

  38. avatar
    Bojan Janković

    Tolerance is minimalist. Respect for diversity deriving from adequate understanding is far more appropriate and effective.

  39. avatar
    Eu CuMine

    Equal rights and obligations, same responsibility for each and every one.

  40. avatar
    Miguel Vieira

    Just stop doing what you have been doing, simple, healthy and economical.. Europe will rapidly start growing again ..

  41. avatar
    Ivan Vikalo

    talk with each other, for real. Getting to know people is the best cure against all and any forms of prejudice :)

  42. avatar
    Nando Aidos

    Start by promoting dialog. Get to know each other. Get the children to show us the way. The adults have had stale ideas.
    Let us listen to the children.
    And women too.

  43. avatar
    Rui Jamp

    Not so much disparity in incoming money at work would be a good starter.

  44. avatar
    Nick Knight

    What, I support the indigenous culture
    Image if the Chinese had to adapt and change there ways to accommodate immigrants. Europe’s indigenous cultures are doomed, to be a grey mess.

  45. avatar
    Gladstone Ogbonna

    If we keep our noses out of each others business then there cant be conflict but now a days and in the past everyone wants to critisis someone else.

  46. avatar

    Respect the societal values and laws of the hosting nation. In Rome, be roman.

  47. avatar
    Tony Kunnari

    Whenever Tolerance, Integrity, Confidence, Humility, Patience, Assistance and Justice are present, we are able to witness harmony.

  48. avatar
    Ferenc Lázár

    Making understand all immigrants to Europe that respect of basic European and Christian values is essential! After this we talk about tolerance, social welfare and harmony.

  49. avatar
    Jude De Froissard

    Give less importance to religions. …throughout history, they created hatred ,massacres,wars,exploitation,poverty, mutilations…..etc…..especially the intolerant ones.

    • avatar
      Prince du Sang

      No, humans did those things.

      Even if you replace religion, some other abstract thought process will be manipulated by mankind to support his or her interests. It has already happened: Social Darwinism, Fascism, Marxism, Capitalism,…- these all have the opportunity to be quite violent….no?

  50. avatar
    Igor Krbavčić

    Creation of “Leitkultur”… Focus on that what unifies us. Ability to joke about our differences.

  51. avatar
    Akpans Intel

    Accepting the urgly fact that its going to remain so until the end of time.Diversity is as old as mankind.Lets take our minds back to the TOWER OF BABEL.

  52. avatar
    Toni Muñiz

    By comments you can tell people are living out of touch with reality and deny the huge problem our uncontrolled borders and idiotic flower power politicians bring us. With high percentage of immigrants living on welfare, criminals and overall contributors of uncivic behaviors. And muslims who also contribute intolerance and xenophobia.

  53. avatar
    Ferenc Lázár

    I agree with Toni Muniz! I was shocked when I found out that when east European countries- Hungary as well- joined E.U. we had to sign that all Asian or African people who claim refugee status in my country, would have the right to unlimited social welfare- unemployment benefit, free housing, free studies etc.- however we who are born there would not get free health care or housing if we didn’t work for minim 3 years! Don’t get me wrong, I feel sorry for those who living in war zone, but nobody can expect from Europe to work for benefits of millions refugees of those countries! They should go to U.S.A. in large numbers as that is the country who tries to enforce “democracy” instead of the so called “dictatorship” in which system those millions have lived in peace(I am aware of the problems of freedom they had, but there was peace and food and health care)!

  54. avatar
    Darcy Brás da Silva

    I must say that the problem tends to be in this precise discourse. Multiculturalism implies that both cultures will maintain and that a clear separation will still exist and that assimilation assumes that one will cave to the other when receptors should be making it possible for the new (not only foreigners but also new generations) to help shape the evolution of culture, and gradually move to a new culture which embodies all of the participating cultures.

    For instance, language can’t be a one way street. If only the foreigner learns the ‘new country of residence language’ there is very limited cultural exchange, and as consequence foreigners remain ‘strange’ to nationals.

    How to tackle it ? Do we force it in schools ? Absolutely not. But we should definitely look at which migrants are being attracted and make those language courses available.

    What about to promote incentive schemes to avoid ‘culture x neighborhood’.

    Gastronomical events where people share national dishes, a great inter cultural exchange where not only you learn about different foods you end up hearing about the history of the dish and learn its original name, maybe a couple words of another language. This usually works great in schools, kids are always welcoming to new things and more importantly they bring their experiences home.

    Or even mixed music concerts. This alone would bring people of all backgrounds to share a common space and with that exchanges can happen. Maybe both sides will discover what they like and enjoy together and reduce that ‘divide’.

    Anyways, In this issue I would strongly look at what portugal has done and have been doing because it seems a couple of things have been a huge success.


  55. avatar
    Eva Benko Zoltan

    When people live well there is harmony, when there is hunger, they all hate eachother and fight one against the other , instad of uniting to fight against the couse of the problem.

  56. avatar
    sarah grunfeld

    The concept of assimilation is abhorrent, it espouses the theory that there is only one right way to live, one set of cultural norms which are best and it denigrates minority cultures, we have to remember that we were born free and keep questioning who has the right to tell us that one set of cultural norms are better and more deserving than another -they all have a place in a society which respects diversity. Assimilation should be firmly assigned to history otherwise we will all end up exactly the same, practicing the same cultural norms, eating the same food, shopping in the same shops, praying to the same God, speaking the same language etc. etc that is not a world I want to live in. We forget amidst all our rules, laws, restrictions and control that we are free people with the right to choose our cultural way of life and know that this is a valid as the so called majority culture

  57. avatar

    Yes, mutliculturalism in Europe it’s beautiful, bringing us bullshit like sharia courts, growing of religious extremism and hatred, issues with women’s and gay’s rights, crime and so on. And don’t tell me second generation are any better once they “integrate”: french and english young muslim have far more backwards opinions about free speech, women’s and gay’s rights, religious freedom you can find, even more extreme than their own peers in theocracies like Iran or Saudi Arabia. I wait for far right movements to keep their game up and kick these idiots out of first world countries.

  58. avatar
    Kovács János

    Diversity by itself is not a value. Tolerance is. But Europe has it’s own identity. Let’s not forget what it means to be European. I’m talking about the “cultural Europe”, not the “institutional Europe”. I’m talking about humanism, christianity and the national identities.

  59. avatar
    Michel Percan

    No, it just shows them how they really act. Go Search diversity in Africa and Asia and leave us alone for once.

  60. avatar
    Su La

    Of course. Diversity is the best characteristic that can exist in any city. People are different and we should embrace differences!!!

  61. avatar
    Toni Muñiz

    Depends how that contact is. Let’s see, my home was broken into by romas. I was carjacked by a black man, I was assaulted by a gang of hispanics. So, has this contact with other cultures helped me embrace diversity? We should not embrace diveristy for the sake of feeling good and making yourself believe you are a good, non racist person. What we need to embrace is people who are good people and obey the law.

  62. avatar
    Suncica Cvitkovic Anderson

    Would you STOP with nonsense? All of us in Europe meet all kinds of people from all over the world in every country, we live all together without any problem, if emigrants respect the host country! GOT IT?

  63. avatar
    Al Rot

    Why would it cause I don’t talk with them about their culture?You know when I talk to migranted friends I talk to them about the same things as with others.Girls,sports,university….It makes me like diversitiy not more then talking to any other friend.In fact I don’t give a damn.

  64. avatar
    Ana Quintas

    Yes. Of course. You only understand when you learn…. And there s nothing more helpful that learning directly from others

  65. avatar
    Lukas Zu

    I find the questions in this site always very suggestive and simplistic. In fact, I will unlike..

  66. avatar
    Loïc Diels

    Yes! Also helps dispel all the nonsense being spewed by the average far right politician too

  67. avatar

    Extreme things such as the burqa(?) need to go. Nobody cares about your “culture” if it’s absolutely BARBARIC.
    Hey if some guys say tomorrow in Islam we chop heads, should we allow that?

    Assimilation seems more easy and if not multiculturalism WITH EXCEPTIONS.
    ( I am looking at you crazy islam )

  68. avatar
    Ivan Burrows


    ‘assimilation is the process by which a person or a group’s language and/or culture come to resemble those of another group’.

    I thought the lie was ‘unity through diversity’, you can’t have both.

  69. avatar
    John Flerianos

    You can’t. How about stop importing illegal immigrants for a change? There’s no civilization on earth that has ever accomplished the harmony lie. Human biodiversity doesn’t allow for it.

  70. avatar
    Maria Paschou

    There are two ways of being able and willing to embrace diversity. The theoretical one is our education. The practical one is that one should be “forced” to live with these diversities. By making something a part of your everyday life, you exclude it for the category of “diversities” and in that way, step by step, always depending on each society’s mechanisms, one starts felling comfortable not only with the presence but also with the idea.

  71. avatar
    Andronikos Panagiotis

    interculturalism failure. see USA. white with white, yellow with yellow, red with red, black with black. Historicaly it will not be other way. think…

  72. avatar

    Dictated from above? None will work! By edict? Forget it!
    Human dignity and respect is the key! Understanding the differences while ensuring that one’s liberties stops where the other’s begins.
    The other day I was observing a group of black young men. Their boysterous behavior was uncomfortable to me and others. People around were grumbling. I sensed a certain pedantic show-offishness from these young men. Their behavior is perfectly acceptable in the countries where they or their ancestors came from. Let us call a spade a spade. For harmony these young men needed to be led to understand that they were causing disconfort to others and this causes friction.
    On a different day I observed another group of young men, a mixed ethnic group. They were also boysterous like young men can be but these were, shall I say, respectful of others around them. There were even friendly interactions with and by bystanders. What a difference!
    I thought that this is a tough topic but certainly one that needs to be addressed by society and understood by politicians if we are to ever reach harmony.
    At that point, integration or interculturalism will happen naturally. Not by design, but naturally!

  73. avatar
    Nando Aidos

    Dictated from above? None will work! By edict or design? Forget it!
    Human dignity and respect are the key! Understanding the differences while ensuring that one’s liberties stops where the other’s begins.
    The other day I was observing a group of black young men. Their boysterous behavior was uncomfortable to me and others. People around were grumbling. I sensed a certain pedantic show-offishness from these young men. Their behavior is perfectly acceptable in the countries where they or their ancestors came from. Let us call a spade a spade. For harmony to happen these young men needed to be led to understand that they were causing disconfort to others and this causes friction at best and racism at its worst.
    On a different day I observed another group of young men, a mixed ethnic group. They were also boysterous like young men can be, but these were, shall I say, respectful of others around them. There were even friendly interactions with and by bystanders. What a difference!
    I thought that this is a tough topic but certainly one that needs to be addressed by society and understood by politicians if we are to ever reach harmony.
    At that point, integration or interculturalism will happen naturally. Not by design, but naturally! Let us call a spade a spade.

  74. avatar
    Desto Milan

    i think if no one can live all by himself, the i think the answer is yes. we all need each other to carry on.

  75. avatar
    Kouzinia K

    Assimilation hasn’t been proven successful in countries where it has been tried (e.g. France). If it was we wouldn’t be talking about interculturalism now. Of course it also depends on the number and quality of similarities between the host culture and the minority one. Eastern Europe had better results in integrating neighboring minorities than the UK or France had with Asian and African ones. Religion plays also an important role in this.

  76. avatar
    David dickson

    Of course mirza Safi believes we should not have the host country be granted “superior” or priority position over immagrant culture. If a person goes to a country they should respect that culture first then in a subordinate way celebrate their original culture. They could also have stayed in their country of origin if it was that great. The French and English I know say that their heritage is gone. That’s a shame and they are the “host country”.

  77. avatar
    Katrin Mpakirtzi

    no…old Europe has a long story. Million of europeans killed in second war..we kill each other…this must Stop because other civilitations want to destroy us but any nation has their own societies and way of living speaking dance writing and must keep them. This is the beauty of differences and the…start of fightings of course if somone feel better than the other in Europe. Europe west and east.. germany and rusia should be united against our enemies(anericanitation and muslims)!!!!!!

  78. avatar
    مشیر بارسلونا

    Multiculturalism is good, it enhances the thought process as collective. However, EU needs to consider who they’re providing immigration? IMHO background check is necessary for peace.

  79. avatar
    Ivan Burrows


    Here’s a novel idea, actually ask the people if they want ‘multiculturalism’ in their country, but then the pro EU fanatics already knows the answer so will do everything possible not to ask them.

    The only question left unanswered is:

    ‘Will the French people take back their country & leave the pointless EU before or after the British ?’

    Vive la révolution!


  80. avatar
    Joey Stack

    If you truly believe this, then this page is even more ridiculously stupid than I thought. There wouldn’t be ahh growing euroscepticism in a number of EU countries if multiculturalism was working for everyone and everyone was happy with the “mix” as you put it.

  81. avatar
    Irena Leibovici

    There is not existing ASSIMILATION, but RESPECT for other CULTURE and RELIGION ! Who has no respect for the majority where he/she came, MUST GO BACK! As simple as in any house of any of us!

  82. avatar
    Evangelos Koumentakos

    IMHO it is the inability of politicians to inspire as well as the numbness of the civil society that became too professional and lost touch with the grassroots.

    The democratic loop is driving people to the extremes rather than the centre.

    Populism is not an easy adversary and the media have also a part of the responsibility, but time and again we have proven we are the ‘mass’ that breaths life in the media…

    #unitedasconsumers #dividedascitizens

  83. avatar
    Olivier Dutreil

    Of course not.multiculturalism is war.integration is peace.yes to european multiculturality because we share the same values but no mix wuth islam

  84. avatar
    Stephen J Gorog

    Stop the invasion and then you can study this subject! If the invasion goes on then you have no reason to study this subject!!

  85. avatar
    Suncica Cvitkovic Anderson

    No it is not. Assimilation is much better, who ever comes have to learn language and culture and adopt to it. That is why you are coming to foreign country, right? If not, stay where you are and ask for money or political help from EU or USA!

  86. avatar
    Miene Mathon

    Languages culture history friendship and WORK …
    We still live in Paris and do European workshops …

  87. avatar
    Eugenia Serban

    Multiculturalism is good. And probably unavoidable.
    Allowing religious groups to isolate, express their beliefs in public and encouraging them to impose on others is BAD.

    religion is personal, private and must be expressed only at home or in church.
    And that includes clothing and wearing religious outfit in public.

  88. avatar
    Andrej Němec

    A good balance of the two is the best form. People living in the same place can have different cultures and languages but they also need to have a common culture and a common language. No one should feel he/she is being excluded from the society or being left behind. And participation of all citizens is the mission of the State. Probably the reintroduction of the mandatory military service would greatly help. Good examples are Israel or Russia. And by sharing a common experience people feel part of the same society.

  89. avatar
    Bódis Kata

    Multiculturalism works as long as *all* individuals concerned are aware of and accept the constitution.
    Ppl who claim their *rights* but refuse to respect the rest of society, don’t respect women or people with different lifestyles; such people ruin multiculturalism.
    Ps: In a society that works well everybody has to contribute.

  90. avatar
    Luchian Mdm

    So you have invented another name for breeding terrorism : Interculturalism… your children will live in deep islamic terrorism with honour killings, beheadings, women lashed in public places for walking on the street without a mortqage bag on their heads, for going to buy bread without a male guardian like they were dogs or sheeps and many more “benefits” of our days left wing traitors and Stockholm syndroms mental pacients.

  91. avatar
    Luchian Mdm

    How do you sincerely aspect to positively insert a culture whose prophet asked for war to be waged against all….delusional fools

  92. avatar
    Luchian Mdm

    Multiculturalism can only be implemented in a world without terrorism generated by one of its “culture” ….thus only in a society free of the unreformed islam who ask for war to be waged against all ‘dar al habr’ ( the islamic name for the non islamic world) fools…wake the * up.

  93. avatar
    Luchian Mdm

    No inter nothing with terrorists and their mentally disabled stockholm syndrom supporters!

  94. avatar

    Assimilation doesn’t mean to become Christian or to eat like us, it just means that you have to respect our rules, our laws and the way we do (because apparently it works better than yours, otherwise you wouldn’t run away from your home country), we cannot accept the fact that you don’t respect women, the fact that you don’t wanna follow our laws on safety, that you discriminate entires communities (gays, jews, lesbians).

  95. avatar
    Ivan Burrows


    ‘interculturalism’ ?! , did you just make that word up lol, just another barking mad ideology like ‘Europeanism’.

  96. avatar
    Borislav Valkov

    Acknowedge the minority heh? The funny thing is if interculturalism is adopted then minorities like the Roma cannot be “protected” as it is now in cases that romas are commiting crimes and the blame(the news tell bulgarians/romanians did it) is put simply on their birth statets. A colleage of mine had to prove she is a bulgarian with her documents and witneses because noone belived that a white woman is a bulgarian in a foreign state in front of local authorities who suspected that her documents were fake. So much for multiculturalism!

  97. avatar
    Antonio Usai

    Europe is multicultural on its own, same goes for Germany, Italy, and Spain, where their internal populations have their peculiarities.

    It’s not even a possible question, Europe is multicultural.

  98. avatar
    Diaconu George Razvan

    But what comes of a culture that can’t be asimilated by the other ones? What if one culture stand against the others so profound?

  99. avatar

    Yes! And no!
    What is the goal? To intentionally absorb and dissolve the outsiders? Then go for assimilation. But this eventually happens but as a political attitude it does not respect the values of those outsiders.
    If the goal is to provide a welcoming and respectful environment for these incoming outsiders, then go for intraculturalism. It is more humane.

  100. avatar
    Nando Aidos

    Yes! And no!
    What is the goal? To intentionally absorb and dissolve the outsiders? Then go for assimilation. Although this eventually happens, when imposed as a political attitude it does not respect the values of those outsiders and causes tension and rift
    If the goal is to provide a welcoming and respectful environment for these incoming outsiders, creating a constructive society, then go for intra-culturalism. It is more humane.

  101. avatar
    Michael Šimková

    What problems really have there been with either the assimilation or multiculturalism models in France or UK aside from the problems created by Islamists?

  102. avatar
    Alex Lexva

    Another nice sounding word as if people are just ingredients to be mixed in the right proportion for the perfect recipe. People mix and socialize in the way they want to whether good or bad whatever fancy names are thrown in

  103. avatar
    Peter Nicko'lay Canseeheart

    Interculturalism and assimilation must care for eachother if needed. What is a culture itself? It is only one kind- human culture. Assimilation may be practiced by good or by bad characters – theoretically. So, no matter the question is retorical – probably – this is kind of the basics.

  104. avatar
    Bleifuß Zaitun

    interculturalism denies einlightenment as an universal concept which encompasses citizens regardless of their religious heritage. Therefore it is anti-humanism and should be reconsidered at least in its methods and structure

  105. avatar
    Dragos Rugescu

    The people you have invited to speak seem to suggest that people have an innate “right to their own culture” and seem to imply that cultures are equal to one another.

    Cultures are not equal to one another, there are objectively damaging aspects to certain cultures which MUST be abandoned if we are to live in a civilized society; aspects such as the public, visually brutal slaughter of pigs in Romania, the shitting on the streets in India, or the way women/gays/atheists are treated in various Islamic countries (death, death, death) MUST END, or genital mutilation, or child labour, etc. You are NOT entitled to your very own culture 100%, once you set foot in Europe.

    If we are to live together, and you come to my country, I expect you to abandon those outrageous bits of your culture which are scandalous to the society you wish to integrate in, OFF THE BAT. No one is asking you to give up your language, your religion, your habits and traditions; however, if a muslim, you WILL abandon stoning women to death, marrying N wives, trying to implement Sharia, threatening gays and killing or in any way pressuring “infidels” to convert the moment you set foot in my country, period, or you get punished or at the end of the stick, kicked out. This is common sense, and goes beyond the law. Alternatively, if you are an Eastern European, you will abandon public gay-hating or religious intolerance when going to the West. If you are from a country in Africa where genital mutilation occurs, you WILL abandon that custom upon arriving in Europe. The list goes on and on…

    In short, cultures are not equal, the law is the law, but there is also an unspoken law of “don’t do to others what you wouldn’t want done to you”. One should not be obligated to “assimilate” completely, but neither are outrageous cultural traits tolerated in any way if they run counter to the very fiber of European society, even beyond the extent of the law.

  106. avatar
    Wendy Harris

    What unites people is what they have in common, not their differences. Even the mixed bag of mercenaries called ISIS are more united in their common cause than any of the nations they attack. ‘When in Rome do as the Romans do’ is not just an adage it is a lesson from history that has been too long ignored.

  107. avatar
    Dalibor Medvedović

    Culture is not science, inter & multi are wrong prefixes. Or you are cultural or… on the way of Brevik mistake…

  108. avatar

    Assimilation can also mean making the majority accept the richness of coexisting with minorities.

  109. avatar
    Kate Traditionog

    Focus On Ending Racism hate towards blacks, bann trump and putin Arrest assange europe will be a place

  110. avatar
    Yannick Cornet

    We cannot force someone to become someone else. Let people be, but let’s make sure to provide a strong education system. So YES: l’m all for Canadian style inter/multi-culturalism. Integration can only be intergenerational.

  111. avatar
    Любомир Иванчев

    Interculturallism doesn’t work when you have two or more cultures or ideologies that are completely contradicting each other in their way of life and views on society. Just like democracy can’t coexist with nazism or communism, there are other idologies and cultures who simply can’t adapt to a liberal, democratic society where equal rights and freedoms are not only valued, but are legislated and considered as norm.

  112. avatar
    Ana Spínola

    Multiculturalism has generated the ghettos. What will interculturalism generate when the more important values in our European common culture – freedom, humans rights, democracy and equality for all – are not follow not even respected?

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