Argentina, like all Latin American countries, was established as a settler colonial country, with significant Spanish immigrants arriving between 1860 and 1930. In 2019, Argentina’s foreign-born population increased by over 2 million migrants, arriving mainly from neighbouring countries such as Paraguay and Bolivia (WMR 2020). Argentina today has a multicultural society composed of immigrants, indigenous people, and mestizos with mestizo (mixed European and Amerindian ancestry) marking up to 97.2% of the population, Amerindian 2.4%, African 0.4% (2010 est.: CIA Factbook 2021).
Argentina has several challenges of societal integration. Its society faces considerable barriers to education and political engagement. Afro-Argentine and indigenous communities in particular face growing inequalities, in terms of access to justice, education, and health care, as well as their overall visibility in society (OHCHR 2019). Recently, Argentina has adopted a national action plan on human rights with special focus on vulnerable groups, in an effort to target the gaps in wages and in school performance among the different factions of society.
Argentina has achieved an overall ICDI score of 0.606. Moderate scores in the components of multiculturalism and anti-discrimination indicate a fairly conducive, and positive legislative environment. Relatively mixed scores in the components of inequality, cohesion and stability and inclusion signal a lack of inclusivity and a level of inequality. Scores above 0.8 in the component of fractionalisation signals the presence of effective cultural participation. Similarly, a score above 0.8 in the component of intercultural attitudes indicate lower levels of racism and intolerance towards minority groups, possibly allowing for genuine dialogue to occur.
Current Situation and Outlook
Compared to its positive situation around the opportunities dimension, Spain achieves a relatively moderate score in its legislative dimension and a lower score in its structural dimension. The lower scores are attributed to limited access to media and communication by various communities and a lack of opportunities for intergroup contact. Argentina’s ICDI score could improve if more attention is given to encouraging intercultural interactions amongst its diverse communities, increasing the access to communication amongst minority groups and strengthening its anti-discriminatory and diversity policies and laws. However, if the situation pertaining to the structural dimension persists, there is a possibility of social cohesion levels eroding.