Resilience, diversity and inclusion

Halleh Ghorashi 
What determines the societal resilience of individuals? Which factors facilitate the resilience of individuals and which don’t, especially in times of increasing (polarizing) diversity and inequality? How can organizations and society contribute to inclusion?  

Halleh Ghorashi, Theme leader Resilience, Diversity and Inclusion

Intensified global mobility and migration combined with the accessibility resulting from the advent of the internet have led to increasing cross-cultural contact. Simultaneously, growing inequality, segregation, uneasiness, and even resentment towards cultural and religious diversity leading to cultural closure instead of cultural inclusion can be observed.

Resilience provides a twofold perspective to think about alternatives to growing polarization and inequality in the world. The concept can either point to the ability to maintain the existing or to the ability to change. The recent discussions about refugees and Europe, for example, lay bare simultaneous processes of both increasing involvement of civilians with refugees and a setup to keep refugees mainly outside Europe.

Within the theme 'Diversity and Inclusion' we study these layered processes and we investigate the conditions at various levels (micro, meso and macro) that can contribute to a sustainable alternative to the growing tensions and uncertainties.

Relevant research questions

  • What facilitates the ability of individuals to be resilient citizens? What are the life strategies to act more resilient in an environment of growing inequality and polarization?
  • What are the social conditions in terms of institutions and organizations which promote or hinder individual resilience? Here we refer to the sustainability of new corporate images and structures of cooperation, with taking into consideration the current (super) diversity of culture, religion, gender, age and class.
  • What is the role of civil discourse (public space, policy) in promoting an inclusive society that is resilient enough to cope with rising tensions due to growing diversity?


Halleh Ghorashi, Theme leader Resilience, Diversity and Inclusion