Rethinking 'Us' & 'Them': Integration and Diversity in Europe

28 Sep 2017, 08:37 AM
Chapters 3 › Unit 3: What does 'integration' mean to you? View instructions Hide instructions

What does 'integration' mean to you?

Tell us: What does 'integration' mean to you?

In this chapter, we've provided you with a fundamental understanding of the various facets of integration and how the debate and approaches vary in Europe and Canada. While it's important to understand how governments manage (or don't manage) this process, integration is something that doesn't start and stop with policy. That's why we have included views from those working in the field, either supporting or circumventing integration policy, as well as voices from the public to get a taste for how people actually understand this term and what ideal they wish for in their societies.

Now, the 'Us' & 'Them' course community wants to hear from you:

Here are some guiding questions to draw from:

  • What do you think of Prof. Dr. Naika Foroutan's four fields of integration (structural, social, cultural, identificative), and which do you feel are emphasized most in your society?
  • Would you prefer to see integration as a top-down, bottom-up, or another directional process?
  • What ways do your societies and governments support or not support integration and multiculturalism (e.g. through resources like integration courses or symbolically through representation)?
  • Who in your societies needs integrating, from your point of view? Does integration stop with refugees and immigrants?
  • How do you think we can best measure integration? What counts most (e.g. numbers, personal encounters, building networks)?
  • Where do you think Europe is headed when it comes to integration? Do you think Europe can learn something from the Canadian example?

Now what?
Click 'Start in Journal', and fill out the entry. How you do this is up to you: You can use just words, or add pictures or links to articles or videos to highlight your point!

Is this journal assignment required?
No! Nothing in our course is 'required', and there are no grades, but we encourage you to reflect on these topics and share if you feel comfortable, so that others in the course can benefit from your experiences.

Towards integration

1 comment

Integration energizes a society towards achievement of a harmonized society. Although it is important for the Government to put in deliberate measures towards integration (structural), deep and meaningful integration must move from polices to the hear of both the "integrater" and "intregratee". This means that cultural and social integration plays a greater part in implementing the integration police set up by Government. Given the recent happenings in Europe over the last few decades, Integration is inevitable and the faster the society opens their hearts towards it, the easier and better for everyone. However, every immigrant should be sensitive and responsive to the cultural and social norms of a society even as they seek to be integrated.


Thanks for your response, Anne. In your opinion, what is one way society can "open its heart" towards social integration?

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