Summary

This 18-month project, funded by the European Fund for the Integration of Third-country Nationals, focuses on diversity in political parties’ programmes, organisation and representation. It builds on MPG’s previous work with political parties. In particular, MPG’s benchmarking tool on diversity within political parties will serve as the indicators framework in this new project.

Description

Objectives

The aim of the project is to initiate, assess and support diversity development processes with regard to ethnic diversity in major political parties in member states. The project both raises awareness and develops practical tools to promote diversity development in parties, particularly at the national level, and enhances the chances of participation for third-country nationals (TCNs) in parties. Parties are central agents of societal development and have a responsibility to incorporate diversity and influence the development of related issues in all areas of society. Improving participation opportunities for TCNs in party politics is essential to increasing the influence of TCNs in decision-making processes and their place as agents in the democratic system.

The objectives will be achieved by means of a transnational comparison of participation opportunities and assessment of diversity within political parties, the development of specific strategy and policy recommendations and self-assessment indicators to assess and enhance diversity in parties. In seven participating countries a university/research centre/NGO is involved and cooperates with major political parties and migrant organisations (30 people directly involved). On-going exchange and participation of TCNs, political stakeholders and representatives of civil society organisations is at the core of the project methodology. MPG, as a supranational partner, strengthens the project’s European perspective.

Working steps

  1. Production of documentary reports and empirical research on diversity development and possibpol-part-div-polilities for participation of TCNs in major political parties in the partner countries;
  2. Internal inquiry in migrant organisations on TCNs participation opportunities in political parties and assessment of party-political diversity by means of the MPG self-assessment-tool;
  3. Seven workshops at national level with political parties and migrant organisations (party members with/without TCNs background, representatives of migrant organisations, elected representatives with TCNs background): Discussion and evaluation of tools for diversity assessment, of national lists of theses on favourable/unfavourable factors relating to party-political participation of TCNs (“Diversity Enhancement Factors”); summary of results in National Research Reports (review of workshop findings, the seven national documentary reports and seven empirical analyses);
  4. Abstraction of national lists of theses for a European list of Diversity Enhancement Factors; drafting of self-assessment indicators for diversity enhancement and possibilities for TNCs participation in pol. parties; annotation of lists with regard to the weight of individual factors in internal review of migrant organisations;
  5. Compilation of a synthesis report and policy recommendations for the EU level and discussion/dissemination of recommended strategies for the assessment of parties at a transnational conference.

Political parties

The political parties involved in the project include the following:

  • Labour Party (Ireland)
  • Polska Partia Pracy - "Sierpien 80" (Poland)
  • Christlich Demokratische Union Deutschlands (Germany)
  • Sozialdemokratische Partei Deutschlands (Germany)
  • Stockholms Socialdemokratiska partidistrikt (Sweden)
  • Partido Socialista Obrero español (Spain)
  • Alleanza per l´ Italia (Italy)
  • Unione Di Centro (Italy)

Project partners

The project is led by the Eutin branch of the Christliches Jugenddorfwerk Deutschlands (Germany). Partners include the Center for International Relations (Poland); the department of political science at the University of Stockholm; the Interdisciplinary Research Group in Immigration (GRITIM) at Universidad Pompeu Fabra (Spain); the Instituto Psicoanalitico per le Richerche Sociali (Italy); the Integration Centre (Ireland); and the Alto Comissariado para a Imigração e Diálogo Intercultural – ACIDI (Portugal).