Minority Group and Multiculturalism

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Multiculturalism:

Success, Failure, and the Future
By Will Kymlicka

TRANSATLANTIC COUNCIL ON MIGRATION

MULTICULTURALISM:
Success, Failure, and the Future
Will Kymlicka
Queen’s University

February 2012

Acknowledgments
This research was commissioned by the
Transatlantic Council on Migration, an initiative of
the Migration Policy Institute (MPI), for its seventh
plenary meeting, held November 2011 in Berlin. The
meeting’s theme was “National Identity, Immigration,
and Social Cohesion: (Re)building Community in an
Ever-Globalizing World” and this paper was one of
the reports that informed the Council’s discussions.
The Council, an MPI initiative undertaken in cooperation with its policy partner the Bertelsmann Stiftung, is a unique deliberative body that examines
vital policy issues and informs migration policymaking processes in North America and Europe. The Council’s work is generously supported by the
following foundations and governments: Carnegie
Corporation of New York, Open Society Foundations, Bertelsmann Stiftung, the Barrow Cadbury Trust (UK Policy Partner), the Luso-American
Development Foundation, the Calouste Gulbenkian
Foundation, and the governments of Germany, the
Netherlands, Norway, and Sweden.
For more on the Transatlantic Council on Migration,
please visit: www.migrationpolicy.org/transatlantic.

© 2012 Migration Policy Institute.
All Rights Reserved.
No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, or any information storage and retrieval system, without permission from the Migration

Policy Institute. A full-text PDF of this document is available for free download from www.migrationpolicy.org. Permission for reproducing excerpts from this report
should be directed to: Permissions Department, Migration Policy Institute, 1400 16th Street, NW, Suite 300, Washington, DC 20036, or by contacting
communications@migrationpolicy.org.
Suggested citation: Kymlicka, Will. 2012. Multiculturalism:
Success, Failure, and the Future. Washington, DC: Migration
Policy Institute.

Table of Contents
Executive Summary......................................................................................................................... 1 I.

Introduction................................................................................................................................... 2 The Rise and Fall of Multiculturalism.................................................................................................3 .

II. What Is Multiculturalism?..................................................................................................4 A. Misleading Model............................................................................................................................ 4 .

B. Multiculturalism in Context.........................................................................................................5 .
C. The Evolution of Multiculturalism Policies................................................................................7

III. Multiculturalism in Practice...........................................................................................10 A. The Canadian Success Story......................................................................................................10 B. The European Experience..........................................................................................................13 .

IV. The Retreat from Multiculturalism..........................................................................14 A. Rhetoric versus Reality ..............................................................................................................14 B. Proliferation of Civic Integration Policies...............................................................................15 .

V. Conclusion:The Future of Multicultural...
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