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Call for evidence: “If you could do one thing…” Local actions to promote social integration

Call for evidence: “If you could do one thing…” Local actions to promote social integration

About the project

The British Academy is conducting a project on social integration to understand the latest research and practical local interventions around integration in the UK. The purpose of this work is to draw together evidence from different sources and provide local government, business leaders and charities with practical tools to help them tackle issues that affect their communities. We will do this through a call for evidence and collation of case studies.

The report will utilise the expertise and experience of academics and practitioners to suggest interventions which might be implemented at a local level by councils, businesses or voluntary sector organisations to promote integration. The report will offer a simple, practical measure to improve social integration, with the understanding that local authorities have constrained resources.

The project will cover a range of aspects of integration (language, education, employment, social relations and political behaviour), and the drivers of integration. To find out more, please visit the project page on the British Academy website: http://www.britac.ac.uk/if-you-could-do-one-thing-local

About the call for evidence

This call for evidence is intended to inform the Academy’s literature review into the broad landscape of social integration in the UK, as well as to highlight activities we may wish to include in the project as case studies, or as interventions we may wish to recommend. Section A seeks information about social integration in the UK more generally. We are interested in section B, about recently arrived migrants of all ages, but in particular young people and children, and in section C, we pose questions about more settled ethnic minority communities.

  • We value the time taken to respond to this call for evidence and would encourage you to offer illustrative examples to support your answers wherever possible; there is no word limit.
  • In your response, please state whether you are responding as an individual, or on behalf of an organisation, and if so, please state the name of your organisation.
  • Please provide your contact details in your response. We may wish to discuss your submission in more detail. If so we will write to you using the contact details you provide.
  • If we use your submission in our final report, names will be redacted unless you specify otherwise in your submission.
  • Please ensure all responses are in Microsoft Word format (not PDF), fully referenced where possible, and returned to policy@britac.ac.uk by Monday 8th May. 

The questions below are intended to help guide and structure your response. These questions are not intended to be exhaustive. While we would value responses to individual questions, we would welcome your views on aspects of social integration which might not be considered here. We are interested in responses to any of the questions raised in sections A, B and C. You are not obliged to respond to all questions.

A.    Questions related to social integration in general

In this section, we would like to know about your views on the broader issues and balance of responsibilities, which local authorities ought to consider.

  1. What examples of good integration have you seen, either between groups or individuals? Please include as much detail as possible about who was involved, the types activities undertaken, and anything else you think relevant.
  2. What are the key issues for local bodies to address regarding integration in their areas? For example, managing inward immigration, language, education, employment, social relations, political behaviour etc.
  3. Different groups can have different integration needs. What can we learn from this about the differences and/or similarities in approaches to integration strategies at the national, and the local level?
  4. Which groups/bodies should be responsible for which elements of integration, and at what level or scale?

B.    Questions related to recently arrived migrants in the UK

In this section, we would like to know about interventions aimed at the integration of recently arrived migrants, most likely to be on an individual basis. The suggestions in questions 1-6 are not intended to be exhaustive. If you know of, have led, or have witnessed another type of intervention at the local level that focuses on recently arrived migrants, please include this in your submission.

  1. What initiatives do you know of that work to integrate migrant children into education? What has your organisation (academic institution/local authority/charity/faith group/other etc.), or another that you know of, done to help with the education or childcare of school-age or younger children of migrants?
  2. What do we know about the quality of employment, and employment advice, for new migrants to the UK? What has your organisation, or another that you know of, done to help out-of-work young migrants find work, such as help with preparing online job applications and CVs?
  3. What infrastructure and interventions exist to support new migrants between the ages of 18-30? What support structures should exist, but don’t?
  4. What has your organisation, or another that you know of, done to encourage partnerships between migrant groups and other local groups or faith organisations?
  5. What has your organisation, or another that you know of, done to help recently-arrived migrants to navigate local services, or access to English language teaching and literacy services?
  6. What has your organisation, or another that you know of, done to help recently-arrived migrants understand British history, culture, and society?

C.    Questions related to more settled ethnic minority communities in the UK

In this section, we would like to know about any local intervention(s) aimed at ethnic minority inter- and/or intra-community integration. The suggestions in questions 1-8 are not intended to be exhaustive. If you know of, have led, or have witnessed another type of intervention at the local level that focuses on ethnic minorities in general, please include this in your submission.

  1. How has your local authority approached integration? Who, if anyone, is/has been responsible for integration activities in your area?
  2. What has your organisation, or another that you know of, done to promote entrepreneurialism within ethnic minority communities?
  3. What has your organisation, or another that you know of, done to increase democratic and civic participation and awareness amongst ethnic minority communities, where possible?
  4. What has your organisation, or another that you know of, done to provide work experience, apprenticeships and/or other types of employment and career support to young people from ethnic minority backgrounds?
  5. What has your organisation, or another that you know of, done to improve community relations, for example by networking between different civic organisations?
  6. What has your organisation, or another that you know of, done to organise sporting clubs or participation in local leagues?
  7. What has your organisation, or another that you know of, done to improve cultural participation amongst different groups, for example, museum visits or film screenings?
  8. What has your organisation, or another that you know of, done to increase awareness of local/national history and British culture amongst different groups?

When describing an intervention related to parts B or C above, please consider the following questions:

  1. When did the intervention take place? (please provide start/finish and state if the intervention was repeated)
  2. Which group(s) did the intervention(s) target? How many participants are/were involved?
  3. Which organisations are/were involved in the intervention(s)?
  4. How have interventions been designed and conducted, for example, through co-production or consultation?
  5. Have any central government initiatives – for example through the Home Office or the Department for Communities and Local Government - helped you or your service users?
  6. How successful was the intervention? Please talk about any evaluation exercises if possible. 

If you would like further information about this project, please contact:

Jamiesha Majevadia
Policy Adviser, Public Policy
j.majevadia@britac.ac.uk
020 7969 5215

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