About research conducted by the UNESCO Chair
One of Professor Mansouri’s many goals as UNESCO Chair, Cultural Diversity and Social Justice will be ensuring cultural diversity is accepted and embraced as a core tenet of humanity. There will also be a special focus on issues confronting African Diaspora communities, migrant youth and women.
The UNESCO Chair, Cultural Diversity and Social Justice has particular interest in:
- The social and ethical challenges of intercultural relations;
- The democratic governance of cultural diversity;
- Intercultural dialogue and conflict resolution;
- Global processes affecting migrant youth, African Diaspora communities and women;
- Youth and civil societies in Arab spring countries.
Selected recent projects and grants hosted by the UNESCO chair:
A Transcultural Approach to Belonging and Engagement Among Migrant Youth
Australian Research Council – Discovery Project
Professor Fethi Mansouri; Professor Lori Beaman; Dr Serena Hussain
This project aims to map experiences of migrant youth in developing and accessing trans-cultural capital, a set of skills, resources and knowledge accessed through multiple cultural repertoires. This will be undertaken through a comparative study of three highly diverse urban contexts: Melbourne, Birmingham and Toronto. The project will examine how trans-cultural capital can affect young people’s ability to instigate, negotiate and maintain socio-cultural connections locally, trans-locally, and trans-nationally. The project’s expected outcomes will contribute to scholarly and policy discussions on migrant youth in the West and improve understanding of their overall social well-being.
Democracy Education in Tunisia – Building Capacity among Youth Leaders
Partnership with the Council for Arab-Australian Relations (CAAR)
Professor Fethi Mansouri, Dr Amanuel Elias, Dr Zouhir Gabsi
In 2017, the UNESCO Chair, Cultural Diversity and Social Justice will partner with the Council of Arab-Australian Relations (CAAR) to host a series of events which will use Australian experience as well as lessons from Indonesia’s path to democracy to support Tunisia’s efforts towards stable democracy.
The project will involve youth leaders from Tunisia who are seen as potential change-makers in the area of civic and democracy education. The select group of youth will be recruited through the project’s partner organization in Tunisia, the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (International IDEA) who are involved in significant work around democracy education among youth in Tunisia and across the region.
Democracy and Local Governance in Tunisia: Australian and Indonesian Perspectives
In 2016, the UNESCO Chair, Cultural Diversity and Social Justice partnered with the Council of Arab-Australian Relations (CAAR) to host a series of events which will use Australian experience as well as lessons from Indonesia’s path to democracy to support Tunisia’s efforts towards stable democracy.
An Arab Exception? The Role of Civil Society in Tunisia's Democratic Transition
In 2015, the UNESCO Chair, Cultural Diversity and Social Justice partnered with the Council of Arab-Australian Relations (CAAR) to host a series of events exploring the role of civil society organisations in Tunisia’s transition to democracy.
Islamic Religiosity and the Challenge of Political Engagement and National Belonging in Multicultural Cities
Between 2013 and 2016, the UNESCO Chair, Cultural Diversity and Social Justice and partners undertook research to understand the role that Islamic religious beliefs, rituals and faith-based community practices play in shaping experiences of belonging and citizenship in multicultural, western cities. In particular, the project aims to develop an understanding of the extent to which the emotional and spiritual aspects of Islamic religious practices encourage feelings of openness toward others and foster forms of civic and political engagement in multicultural cities.
More Information on the Intercultural Understanding project
Intercultural Understanding in Primary and Secondary Schools
Between 2013 and 2016, the UNESCO Chair, Cultural Diversity and Social Justice and parterns undertook a large-scale research project developed to build an appreciation of Australia’s social, cultural, linguistic and religious diversity, and the ability to relate to and communicate across cultures. The ICU Project works with schools and systems to help them build ICU.
Social Networks, Belonging and Active Citizenship Among Migrant Youth in Australia
Between 2009 and 2013, the UNESCO Chair, Cultural Diversity and Social Justice and partners investigated the extent to which young people use formal networks (such as government agencies and public institutions as well as community-specific and NGO support services) and informal networks (including family and subcultural networks) to develop a sense of social connectedness and belonging in a multicultural social environment.
Diversity: An Educational Advantage online teacher support is a resource developed by the UNESCO Chair, Cultural Diversity and Social Justice and partners in 2009 as a resource for teachers and the community.The book consists of a Model of Best Practice, Teaching and Learning Resources and Community-School Engagement Models. In particular, the teaching modules aim to broaden student awareness of cultural diversity and develop a more informed understanding of Australia as a culturally diverse nation.