In an era of global interconnectedness, values such as social inclusion and intercultural dynamics, gender equality and religious tolerance are crucial issues for the European agenda.
The European Union (EU), which comprises 27 member States and counts more than 450 million citizens of different origins, religions, traditions and identities, is actively engaged in promoting these values within and beyond its borders.
Soon we will see what actions and programmes the EU has undertaken to foster social inclusion and intercultural dynamics. Read on.
Table of contents
Social inclusion and intercultural dynamics: two key concepts
The concept of social inclusion goes beyond mere access to fundamental rights: it is about ensuring that every individual is able to participate fully in the society in which he or she lives, regardless of ethnicity, gender, religion, sexual orientation or economic status.
Intercultural dynamics, on the other hand, concerns the integration of people from different cultures who come into contact with each other and interact, exchanging experiences, values, knowledge and ways of life.
Social inclusion and intercultural dynamics are two closely related key concepts, as social inclusion requires the recognition and respect of cultural diversity, while intercultural dynamics foster the construction of a more open, inclusive and democratic society.
To achieve true social inclusion and harmonious coexistence between cultures, however, it is not enough to tolerate or accept differences, but dialogue, cooperation, participation and active citizenship must be promoted.
Social inclusion and intercultural dynamics within the European Union: the most relevant policies
As well as being an example of political and economic integration, the EU promotes social inclusion and intercultural dynamics through a range of policies and programmes, from supporting education and employment to combating discrimination.
Among the most relevant policies are:
1. Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union
The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union enshrines the right to non- discrimination, dignity, freedom, solidarity, justice and citizenship and binds the EU institutions and member states to respect human rights.
2. European Social Fund (ESF)
The European Social Fund finances projects and actions to improve the employment, education, training and inclusion of European citizens, especially the most vulnerable and disadvantaged groups.
3. Erasmus+ programme
The Erasmus+ programme offers opportunities for mobility, learning, cooperation and dialogue between students, teachers, young people, volunteers, organisations and institutions from different European and non-European countries, with the aim of promoting European citizenship, cultural diversity and social inclusion.
4. Creative Europe programme
The Creative Europe programme supports the cultural and creative sector, promoting cultural diversity, intercultural dialogue, European citizenship and competitiveness.
5. Citizenship, Equality, Rights and Values programme
The Citizens, Equality, Rights and Values programme finances projects and actions that aim to promote and protect fundamental rights, gender equality, non-discrimination, justice and active citizenship.
Gender equality is a key factor for social inclusion and intercultural dynamics. It is a fundamental right, enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, that people receive equal treatment, with equal access to resources and opportunities, regardless of their gender.
Gender equality, in fact, is not only a prerequisite for the development of democracy, but also contributes to:
The European Union’s commitment, as we have seen, translates into concrete actions that promote gender equality, women’s participation in political life and combat gender-based violence.
Interfaith dialogue is another of the many dimensions of intercultural dialogue and consists of promoting respect, understanding and cooperation between different religious communities and beliefs in the EU and around the world.
The European Union, again, promotes religious tolerance not only through the protection of fundamental rights, but also through active policies and social inclusion programmes.
Contact us to find the best tools for you
Social inclusion and intercultural dynamics are essential for peace, democracy, development and cohesion in Europe and worldwide. The EU recognises the fundamental role that citizens, organisations, local and regional authorities, cultural operators and the media can play in disseminating the values and practices of social inclusion.
For these and other reasons, the EU encourages and supports them through instruments of participation, consultation, information and awareness-raising. To find the instrument best suited to your needs, contact us by filling out the contact form below or by calling +390957463250.
e-Medine is with you.