Highlights of the European year of intercultural dialogue 2008
Europe is becoming more culturally diverse. The enlargement of the European Union, free movement of workers in the Single Market and globalisation have increased the multicultural character of many countries, adding to the number of languages, religions, ethnic and cultural backgrounds found on the continent. European societies are moving away from previous models of multiculturalism and assimilation, where different cultures tend to co-exist without interacting and where migrants are expected to adopt the majority culture. To make the most of the diversity which characterises Europe,... communities need to make a strong commitment to intercultural dialogue. The concept of interculturalism embraces the idea of a fruitful exchange between different cultural groups that will enrich the whole society. As a result, intercultural dialogue has an increasingly important role to play in fostering European identity and citizenship.