Skip to main content
×
×
Home

“Diversity” and the Social Imaginary

  • Steven Vertovec (a1)
Abstract
Abstract

“Diversity” is the focus of a wide-ranging corpus of normative discourses, institutional structures, policies and practices in business, public sector agencies, the military, universities and professions. Here, a brief account of the rise and diffusion of the term is provided. It now addresses a wide variety of social differences, while at least six distinct facets or goals of diversity policy can be discerned. Ambiguity, multivocality and banality are key characteristics of diversity discourse, but these function to strengthen, rather than weaken, the spread and acceptance of the notion. In many settings the commitment to diversity is mainstreamed, expected, and even taken-for-granted. Diversity discourse is related to ongoing processes of social diversification, but its diffusion is not driven by these processes. Overall, despite its many imprecisions, the impacts of the diversity corpus entail a transformation, or at least refinement, of the social imaginary.

  • View HTML
    • Send article to Kindle

      To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

      Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

      Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

      “Diversity” and the Social Imaginary
      Available formats
      ×
      Send article to Dropbox

      To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

      “Diversity” and the Social Imaginary
      Available formats
      ×
      Send article to Google Drive

      To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

      “Diversity” and the Social Imaginary
      Available formats
      ×
Copyright
References
Hide All
Ahmed Sara, 2007. “The language of diversity,” Ethnic and Racial Studies 30 (2), pp. 235-256.
Ahmed Sara, 2012. On Being Included: Racism and Diversity in Institutional Life (Durham, Duke University Press).
Aspinall Peter J. 2009. “The future of ethnicity classifications”, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 35 (9), pp. 1417-1435.
Aspinall Peter J. 2012. “Answer formats in British Census and survey ethnicity questions: Does open response better capture ‘superdiversity’?”, Sociology, 46 (2), pp. 354-364.
Austin Lucinda L. 2010. “Framing diversity: A quantitative content analysis of public relations industry publications”, Public Relations Review, 36, pp. 298-301.
Baer Susanne, Bittner Melanie and Göttsche Anna Lena 2010. Mehrdimensionale Diskriminierung: Begriff, Theorien und juristiche Analyse (Berlin, Antidiskriminierungsstelle des Bundes).
Bauman Zygmunt, 2001. “The great war of recognition”, Theory, Culture & Society 18 (2-3), pp. 137-150.
Beck Ulrich, 2006. The Cosmopolitan Vision (Cambridge, Polity).
Beck Ulrich and Grande Edgar 2012. “Cosmopolitanism and Cosmopolitanization”, in Ritzer George, ed., Wiley-Blackwell Encyclopedia of Globalization (Oxford, Blackwell).
Bell Joyce M. and Hartmann Douglas, 2007. “Diversity in everyday discourse: The cultural ambiguities and consequences of ‘happy talk’”, American Sociological Review, 72, pp. 895-914.
Bernstein Mary, 2009. “Identity politics”, Annual Review of Sociology, 31, pp. 47-74.
Blackmore Jill, 2006. “Deconstructing diversity discourses in the field of educational management and leadership”, Education Management Administration and Leadership, 34 (2), pp. 181-199.
Bosswick Wolfgang, Heckmann Friedrich and Lüken-Klaßen Doris, 2007. Diversity Policy in the City (Bamberg: European Forum for Migration Studies).
Bundesregierung Die [Deutschland] 2007. Der Nationale Integrationsplan: Neue Wege – Neue Chancen (Berlin, Presse- und Informationsamt der Bundesregierung).
CLIP, Cities for Local Integration Policy, 2008. Equality and Diversity in Jobs and Services: City Policies for Migrants in Europe (Dublin, European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions).
Cooper Davina, 2004. Challenging Diversity: Rethinking Equality and the Value of Difference (Cambridge, Cambridge University Press).
Delanty Gerard, 2006. “The cosmopolitan imagination: Critical cosmopolitanism and social theory”, British Journal of Sociology, 57 (1), pp. 25-47.
Delanty Gerard 2012. “A cosmopolitan approach to the explanation of social change: Social mechanisms, processes, modernity’”, The Sociological Review, 60 (2), pp. 333-354.
Della Porta Donatella, Kriesi Hanspeter and Rucht Dieter, eds., 2009. Social Movements in a Globalizing World (Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan).
Eisenberg Avigail and Kymlicka Will, 2011. “Bringing institutions back in: How public institutions assess identity”, in Eisenberg Avigail and Kymlicka Will, eds., Identity Politics in the Public Realm (Vancouver, UBC Press, pp. 1-30).
Eurocities 2010. Cities accommodating Diversity (Brussels, Eurocities and Migration Policy Group).
European Commission 2007. Handbook on Integration for Policy-Makers and Practitioners (Brussels, European Commission Directorate-General Justice, Freedom and Security).
Faist Thomas, 2009. “Diversity: A new mode of incorporation?”, Ethnic and Racial Studies, 32 (1), pp. 171-190.
Fraser Nancy and Honneth Axel, 2003. Redistribution or Recognition? A Political-Philosophical Exchange (London, Verso).
Guiraudon Virginie, 2009. “Equality in the making: Implementing European non-discrimination law,” Citizenship Studies, 13 (5), pp. 527-549.
Herring Cedric, 2009. “Does diversity pay? Race, gender, and the business case for diversity”, American Sociological Review, 74, pp. 208-224.
Home Office [United Kingdom] 2005. Improving Opportunities, Strengthening Society: The Government’s Strategy to Increase Race Equality and Community Cohesion (London, Her Majesty’s Stationary Office).
Isar Yudhishthir Raj, 2006. “Cultural diversity”, Theory, Culture & Society, 23(2-3), pp. 372-375.
Jacobs Jane M. and Fincher Ruth, 1998. “Introduction”, in Jacobs Jane and Fincher Ruth, eds., Cities of Difference (New York, The Guildford Press, pp. 1-25).
Johns Nick, 2004. “Ethnic diversity policy: Perceptions within the NHS”, Social Policy & Administration, 38 (1), pp. 73-88.
Kalev Alexandra, Kelly Erin and Dobbin Frank, 2006. “Best practices or best guesses? Assessing the efficacy of corporate affirmative action and diversity policies”, American Sociological Review, 71, pp. 589-617.
Kelly Erin and Dobbin Frank, 1998. “How affirmative action became diversity management: Employer response to antidiscrimination law, 1961 to 1996”, American Behavioral Scientist, 41: 96084.
Kymlicka Will, 2007. Multicultural Odysseys: Navigating the New International Politics of Diversity (Oxford, Oxford University Press).
Lees Loretta, 2003. “The ambivalence of diversity and the politics of urban renaissance: The case of youth in downtown Portland, Maine”, International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, 27 (3), pp. 613-634.
Lentin Alana and Titley Gavan 2008. “More Benetton than barricades? The politics of diversity in Europein Titley Gavan and Lentin Alana, eds., The Politics of Diversity in Europe (Strasbourg, Council of Europe Publishing, pp. 9-30).
Lituin Deborah R., 1997. “The discourse of diversity: From biology to management”, Organization 4 (2), pp. 187-209.
Johnston William B. and Packer Arnold E., 1987. Workforce 2000: Work and Workers for the Twenty-First Century (Indianapolis, Hudson institute).
Lorbiecki Anna and Jack Gavin, 2000. “Critical turns in the evolution of diversity management”, British Journal of Management, 11, pp. 17-31.
Lynch Frederick R. 1997. “The diversity machine”, Society 34, pp. 32-44.
Modan Gabriella 2008. “Mango Fufu Kimchi Yucca: The depoliticization of ‘diversity’ in Washington, D.C. discourse”, City & Society, 2, pp. 188-221.
NAO, National Audit Office 2004. Delivering Public Services to a Diverse Society (London, The Stationery Office).
Nishii Lisa H. and Özbilgin Mustafa F., 2007. “Global diversity management: Towards a conceptual framework”, International Journal of Human Resource Management, 18 (11), pp. 1883-1894.
Page Scott E., 2007. The Difference: How the Power of Diversity Creates Better Groups, Firms, Schools, and Societies (Princeton, Princeton University Press).
Prewitt Kenneth, 2002. “Does ethno-racial classification have a future in policymaking?”, Public Affairs Report, 44 (1), pp. 1; 16-19.
Prewitt Kenneth, 2005. “Racial classification in America: Where do we go from here?”, Daedalus, 134 (1), pp. 5-17.
Skrentny John D., 2002. The Minority Rights Revolution (Cambridge, Belknap Press of Harvard University Press).
Steuerwald Ruth and Ünsal Nadiye, 2012. Diversity Mainstreaming in und durch Instititionen der öffentlichen Verwaltung: Ausgewählte Anwendungsbeispiele guter Praxis aus europäischen Mitgliedsstaaten (Berlin, Antidiskriminierungsstelle des Bundes).
Süß Stefan and Kleiner Markus, 2005. “Diversity-Management in Deutschland”, Fernuniversität Hagen, Fachbereich Wirschaftswissenschaft, Arbeitsbericht, 15.
Süß Stefan and Kleiner Markus, 2007. “Diversity management in Germany: Dissemination and design of the concept”, International Journal of Human Resource Management, 18 (11), pp. 1934-1953.
Taylor Charles, 1992. Multiculturalism and “The Politics of Recognition” (Princeton, Princeton University Press).
Taylor Charles, 2007. Modern Social Imaginaries (Durham, Duke University Press).
UNESCO, 2009. UNESCO World Report: Investing in Cultural Diversity and Intercultural Dialogue (Paris, United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization).
Urry John, 2006. “Complexity”, Theory, Culture & Society, 23 (2-3), pp. 111-117.
Vertovec Steven, 2007. “Super-diversity and its implications”, Ethnic and Racial Studies, 29 (6), pp. 1024-1054.
Vertovec Steven 2011. “The cultural politics of nation and migration”, Annual Review of Anthropology, 40, pp. 241-256.
Vertovec Steven and Wessendorf Susanne, 2010. “Introductionin Vertovec Steven and Wessendorf Susanne, eds., The Multicultural Backlash: European Discourses, Policies and Practices (London, Routledge, pp. 1-31).
Vester Michael, 2005. “Class and culture in Germany”, in Devine Fiona, Savage Mike, Scott John and Crompton Rosemary, eds., Rethinking Class: Cultures, Identities and Life-Styles (Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 69-94).
Waters Mary and Vang Zoua M., 2007. “The challenges of immigration to race-based diversity policies in the United Statesin Seidle Leslie, Bantin Keith and Courchene Thomas, eds., Diversity and Canada’s Future (Montreal, Institute for Research on Public Policy Press, pp. 411-450).
Wessendorf Susanne, 2011. “Commonplace diversity and the ‘ethos of mixing’: Perceptions of difference in a London neighbourhood”, Max-Planck-Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity, Working Paper 11–09.
Wrench John, 2007. Diversity Management and Discrimination: Immigrants and Ethnic Minorities in the EU, Aldershot, Ashgate.
Young Iris Marion, 1997. “Unruly categories: A critique of Nancy Fraser’s dual systems theory”, New Left Review 222, pp. 147-160.
Zukin Sharon, 1998. “Urban lifestyles: Diversity and standardization in spaces of consumption”, Urban Studies, 35 (5-6), pp. 825-839.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

European Journal of Sociology / Archives Européennes de Sociologie
  • ISSN: 0003-9756
  • EISSN: 1474-0583
  • URL: /core/journals/european-journal-of-sociology-archives-europeennes-de-sociologie
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Keywords:

Metrics

Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 33
Total number of PDF views: 461 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 1428 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 22nd February 2018. This data will be updated every 24 hours.