News Archive:


Mental healthcare in Kenya: Exploring optimal conditions for capacity building

The global burden of disease related to mental disorders is on the increase, with the World Health Organization (WHO) estimating that over 450 million people are affected worldwide. The Mental Health Global Action Program (mhGAP) was launched by the WHO in 2002 in order to address the widening gap in access to mental healthcare in low-income countries. Despite these efforts, access to mental healthcare in low-income countries remains poor and is often described as inadequate, inefficient and inequitable, with an 85% estimated treatment gap in low-income countries, as compared with 35% to 50% in high-income countries. In this article, the authors argue that integrating mental health services into primary healthcare settings through capacity building is vital with regard to achieving mhGAP goals. The article explores the challenges to and potential enablers for the improvement of the delivery of broad-based mental healthcare services in Kenya. The authors propose the integration of the conceptual dimensions of both the cosmopolitanism and capabilities approaches as a combined strategy for dealing with capacity building in heterogeneous settings such as Kenya. Read the full story

Transnationalism, Identity, and Belonging: Muslim Diasporas in Melbourne

The Paradox of Government Approaches Towards the Romanies in Italy

The aim of a new paper by Riccardo Armillei, is to examine the contradictions embedded in the production of Romanies as “nomads”, a term which positions them as being unwilling or unable to settle within the host society. My analysis highlights the approach adopted by Italian institutions in terms of “inclusive exclusion” of the Romanies, instead of thinking about it as mere “othering”, marginalisation or exclusion. On the one hand, the government makes significant investment in schooling and employment projects; on the other, it keeps promoting the “camp policy”, forced evictions and emergency measures. Public funds are used in this way to promote a “fake” inclusion, which creates and perpetuates a system of “welfare dependency”. Read the full article

Islam and Development: Exploring the Invisible Aid Economy

UNESCO research fellow David Tittersor and Matthew Clarke’s new publication. ‘The study of Islam since the advent of 9/11 has made a significant resurgence. However, much of the work produced since then has tended to focus on the movements that not only provide aid to their fellow Muslims, but also have political and at times violent agendas. This tendency has led to a dearth of research on the wider Muslim aid and development scene. Focusing on the role and impact of Islam and Islamic Faith Based Organisations (FBOs), an arena that has come to be regarded by some as the ‘invisible aid economy’, Islam and Development considers Islamic theology and its application to development and how Islamic teaching is actualized in case studies of Muslim FBOs. It brings together contributions from the disciplines of theology, sociology, politics and economics, aiming both to raise awareness and to function as a corrective step within the development studies literature.’ Find out more

International Symposium on Migration

Human rights focus for UNESCO lecture

Human Rights Commission President, Prof Gillian Triggs, will tackle the ethical challenges of policy making at this year’s lecture. Read the full story.

Get fact: were there really 50,000 boat arrivals a year under Labor?

Tony Abbott has claimed that before he “stopped the boats”, they were coming in at a rate of 50,000 a year. Is that true? David Tittensor, a research fellow to the UNESCO Chair, with Deakin’s Centre for Citizenship and Globalisation, checks the claim. Read the full story


Gillian Triggs to deliver the UNESCO Chair CDSJ Lecture

The 2014 Annual Lecture of the UNESCO Chair, Cultural Diversity and Social Justice lecture to be delivered by Emeritus Professor Gillian Triggs, President of the Australian Human Rights Commission. More Information

Courageous Conversations about Race

‘Courageous Conversations about Race: let’s have the conversation’, by internationally recognised racism expert, Glenn E Singleton. This workshop is co-presented by the Faculty of Arts and Education, the Faculty of Health and the Centre for Citizenship and Globalisation, in partnership with Equity and Diversity. Wednesday 25 June, 3.30 pm – 4.30 pm, Burwood Campus

Special Issue: Journal of Social Inclusion

This Special Issue, guest edited by UNESCO Chair Professor Fethi Mansouri and Dr. Anna Halafoff, on “Migrant Youth, Intercultural Relations and the Challenges of Social Inclusion”, reports recent cutting edge research into the complex nature of migrant youth settlement in multicultural émigré societies. Drawing on multidisciplinary research, it explores the latest intersecting theories on cultural diversity, intercultural relations and multiculturalism in the context of globalised cities where access to and sharing of public spaces is becoming a highly contested issue. Read the full story

The House of Service book launch

UNESCO research Fellow David Tittensor offers a ground-breaking new perspective on the Gülen movement, a Turkish Muslim educational activist network that emerged in the 1960s and has grown into a global empire with an estimated worth of $25 billion. Named after its leader Fethullah Gülen, the movement has established more than 1,000 secular educational institutions in over 140 countries, aiming to provide holistic education that incorporates both spirituality and the secular sciences.  More Details

UNESCO Chair proudly supports Deakin Iftar dinner & delivers keynote address.

The Deakin University Iftar Dinner took place at Deakin’s Melbourne Burwood Campus on Tuesday, 22 July 2014. Approximately 80 people attended the event, including students from the Australian Union of Jewish Students and the Islamic Society of Deakin University. Read the full story

Erdo─čan moves against ‘parallel state’

The rift between the Gülen movement and Turkey’s ruling party is widening, says UNESCO research fellow David Tittensor.
The Gülen movement, which its 72-year-old founder, retired imam Fethullah Gülen, denies is even a movement, is both political and not political—that is, it is not a political party and, to date, appears to have no intention of making the transition from being a social-religious movement to the hustings. Read the full article

New Book: Global Perspectives on the Politics of Multiculturalism

This new book by UNESCO Chair Fethi Mansouri and Boulou Ebanda de B’béri, examines the contested philosophical foundations of multiculturalism and its, often controversial, applications in the context of migrant societies. It also explores the current theoretical debates about the extent to which multiculturalism, and related conceptual constructs, can account for the various ethical challenges and policy dilemmas surrounding the management of cultural diversity in our contemporary societies. The authors consider common conceptual and empirical features from a transnational perspective through analysis of the case studies of Australia, Canada, Columbia, Germany, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and Uruguay. More Information

Natalia Pereira awarded PhD scholarship with UNESCO Chair

Natalia Pereira has be awarded a PhD scholarship by the UNESCO Chair, Cultural Diversity and Social Justice. Under the the supervision of Alfred Deakin Professor Fethi Mansouri, Natalia’s PhD is tentatively titled ‘Irregular Migration in the Southeast Asian Region’. Read the full story

David Tittensor joins the UNESCO Chair team

David’s research interests are Muslim movements, Turkish politics and society, religion and development, and the Middle East. He has written and presented widely on the Gülen Movement, and has since converted his dissertation into a book entitled The House of Service: The Gülen Movement and Islam’s Third Way (Oxford University Press, April, 2014). Upon completing this project he expanded his research agenda to explore the wider domain of religion and development, with a particular focus on Islam. An outgrowth of the broader focus has been an edited volume (with Prof. Matthew Clarke) entitled Islam and Development: Exploring the Invisible Aid Economy, which is due out in June 2014 with Ashgate. Read the full story

Professor Mansouri appointed UNESCO Chair

Director of the Alfred Deakin Institute for Citizenship and Globalisation, Alfred Deakin Professor Fethi Mansouri was appointed the UNESCO chair on Comparative Research on Cultural Diversity and Social Justice, July 2013