Public Attitudes Towards Multiculturalism and Interculturalism in Australia
journal contributionposted on 2021-09-01, 00:00 authored by Amanuel EliasAmanuel Elias, Fethi MansouriFethi Mansouri, Reem Sweid
AbstractThe growing intellectual and policy debate around optimal approaches to diversity governance, particularly in relation to criticism of multiculturalism, is now entering a new phase characterised by advocating alternative conceptual and policy paradigms most notably interculturalism. Proposing a conceptual complementarity approach, rather than dogmatically oppositional stances, this paper approaches interculturalism as offering heuristic additive values to multiculturalism. As the paper shows, the Australian context indeed offers an optimal case study for conceptualising and engaging with interculturalism within an otherwise resilient multicultural framework. Australia’s unique and strong multicultural ethos has combined with successful intercultural strategies at different levels of diversity governance, policy and practice across various sectoral terrains. This paper uses an online national survey to examine the public understanding of and attitudes towards multiculturalism and interculturalism as supposedly distinct yet interconnected policy tools relating to the ever-changing diversity governance agenda.