The Intercultural city aims at building its policies and identity on the explicit acknowledgement that diversity can be a resource for the development of the society.

The first step is the adoption (and implementation) of strategies that facilitate positive intercultural encounters and exchanges, and promote equal and active participation of residents and communities in the development of the city, thus responding to the needs of a diverse population. The Intercultural integration policy model is based on extensive research evidence, on a range of international legal instruments, and on the collective input of the cities member of the Intercultural Cities programme that share their good practice examples on how to better manage diversity, address possible conflicts, and benefit from the diversity advantage.

This section offers examples of intercultural approaches that facilitate the development and implementation of intercultural strategies.

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To get acquainted with cities’ good practices related to the management of the Covid-19 pandemic, please visit Intercultural Cities: COVID-19 Special page.

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An Anti-Racism Cockpit

Concept

Internally focused activity is key to addressing systemic discrimination. It enables a focus on the priorities, processes and practices of an organisation. It can be difficult to secure a consistent and coherent internal focus in a large organisation such as the City of Turin. Different departments can pursue their own intercultural policies without reference to each other or knowledge about what others was doing.

It is necessary to open up permanent spaces for exchange of knowledge, sharing of good practices, and coordination of actions. Such a space, in the form of an Intercultural Working Froup in this instance, serves to raise the quality of intercultural action, and provide a particular form of training, training by doing.

Foundation

This initiative is rooted in the ‘Guidelines for the Coordination of the Intercultural Policies of the City of Turin’ adopted in 2018. The guidelines provide a framework for action by the public administration to increase participation of all citizens, eliminate all forms of racist discrimination, and strengthen a sense of community.

The guidelines set out three lines of action for an Office for the Coordination of Intercultural Policies. The first line of action is focused on the work of the public administration. It is concerned with inter-sectoral dialogue and coordination within the public administration, between responsible departments and between the Councillors. The second line of action refers to networking by the public administration for co-planning, governance and evaluation. The third line of action refers to work on visibility and training, including strengthening of civil society.

Progress

An Intercultural Working Group, transversal across the various municipal services, was formed. It meets on a monthly basis and is coordinated by the chief of staff of the Deputy Mayor for Human Rights and Youth Policies. This started informally with a small group and has been enlarged to include ten members. Members have some form of equality brief within their service area. Care is taken in this process of growth to keep the working group rooted in its motivation for and understanding of intercultural action. Not all core functions are covered as of yet.

The initial focus is to exchange information, practices, and contacts between the different departments involved. Connections have been established between departments on intercultural issues and responses to these issues. Individual members have taken on responsibilities in acting to challenge racism and built their expertise in doing so. A foundation for self-evaluation of intercultural policies in the different services has been created.


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