Can we live together in a diverse Britain?

Posted by er134 at Nov 13, 2013 10:45 AM |
Professor Ted Cantle to discuss ‘how globalisation and diversity changes everything’ at University of Leicester on Wednesday 20 November

Issued by University of Leicester Press Office on 13 November 2013

Professor Ted Cantle, the UK’s leading authority on community cohesion and intercultural relations, is to discuss ‘Race and Identity - how globalisation and diversity changes everything’ at a free public lecture at the University of Leicester on Wednesday 20 November.

The event is part of Black History Month 2013, which aims to promote knowledge of black history, culture and heritage and black contributions to British society.

Professor Cantle’s UK work has widely been seen as heralding a new framework for 'race' issues focused on interaction and positive values for diversity. His writings and research also includes reflections on the 'Leicester model' of community relations.

Professor Cantle said: “Leicester is the ideal venue for this lecture as it has always had a very progressive and innovative approach and has already moved towards an intercultural model.

“The lecture will suggest that our ideas about race and identity now have to change to reflect the reality of globalisation and super diversity.”

Professor Cantle has held a wide range of senior positions in public service at both national and local levels, focusing on urban regeneration and key social and environmental problems.

In August 2001, Professor Cantle was appointed by the Home Secretary to Chair the Community Cohesion Review Team and to lead the review into the causes of the summer disturbances in a number of northern towns and cities. The ground breaking Report –known as ‘the Cantle Report’ – was produced in December 2001 and made around 70 recommendations.

The concept of ‘community cohesion’ was subsequently adopted by the UK Government and many of the interventions which it spawned have been used by local communities in the UK and around the world.

Community cohesion programmes have succeeded in reducing tension in local communities by promoting cross cultural contact, developing support for diversity and promoting unity.  Cohesion also continues to tackle inequality and the prejudice and discrimination which underpin it. His book Community Cohesion: a New Framework for Race and Diversity provides a historical background and review of current policy and practice.

Professor Cantle has also worked in both the private and health sectors. He was chair of the Nottinghamshire Sports Partnership until 2012 and is currently chair of the Nottingham Castle Working Group. He is also visiting professor at Nottingham Trent University and the University of Nottingham and has honorary doctorates from Oxford Brookes and Portsmouth Universities.

Mr John Williams, of the University of Leicester’s Department of Sociology, who organised the event, said: “Professor Ted Cantle has been a central figure in the UK and abroad for exploring much broader questions about ethnicity, commonalities and difference.

“He has examined in great depth how people from different UK communities manage to – or do not manage to – live together. He coined the term ‘community cohesion’ in writing about the roots of ethnic disturbances in the early 2000s, and he has been hugely influential in policy circles by advising governments on the importance of promoting socio-cultural interaction across ethnic boundaries.

“Professor Cantle has taken a special interest in the successes – and the barriers which still exist – in the city of Leicester. I am sure his lecture will be timely, provocative and very relevant to the people who live here. He is an exciting and accessible speaker.

“It is a great privilege for the University of Leicester to be hosting him and we sincerely hope that people drawn from the wide range of different communities that make up this city will take the opportunity to join us on campus to hear what Professor Cantle has to say about Leicester and about life in multicultural Britain today.”

Steve O’Connor, Director of Development at the University of Leicester, said: “The University is delighted to host Professor Cantle’s lecture during Black History Month 2013.

“Ted is a leading authority on the concept of ‘community cohesion’ and his work has focused on some of the big societal challenges of urban regeneration, community relations and the environment.  It is apt that his lecture should take place on a University campus and in a city renowned for its diversity and inclusiveness.”

The Lecture will take place in the Ken Edwards Lecture Theatre 1 on Wednesday 20 November 2013, starting at 6:00pm. Entry is free and open to all.

If you plan to attend please contact Louise Carr at:


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