Researching multicultrual societies: benefits, limitations and challenges of co-ethnical research design in urban planning

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One fact of a multicultural society is that people with migration background are often more deprived than those of the majority of society. Although the group of migrants is usually very heterogeneous, the factor migration makes a significant difference for participating in important parts of life like health, education, and housing (Gosine; Teelucksingh, 2008). In standard surveys migrants are frequently underrepresented; consequently, data having a bias regarding the diversity of contemporary societies is used for urban planning. To understand and represent differences of multicultural society specific research methods like coethnical survey designs are needed: questionnaires need to be translated into corresponding languages, interviewers of the addressed ethnic group are required and quota samples need to represent different groups equally. Using such a research design a survey on the topic of procedural environmental justice comparing Germans and Turkish migrants was carried out in the Ruhr, Germany. The data shows both existing and lacking capabilities of households having a migration background. No differences were found in communal mastery and social networks between Turkish migrants and Germans, but the Turkish migrants reported less participation in decision making than Germans, although their intention was similar. The method of co-ethnical surveys will be explained using the example of the survey on procedural environmental justice. Also a new survey-design dealing with possible difference in energetic renovation will be presented. Both will be discussed in the light of planning as public policy in an intercultured society.
Book of proceedings: Annual AESOP Congress, Definite Space – Fuzzy Responsibility, Prague, 13-16th July, 2015
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