MULTICULTURALISM IN GEORGIA: PROBLEMS AND PERSPECTIVES

Salome Dundua

Abstract


During 25 years of independence, because of different objective and subjective reasons, independent Georgian State could not fully get over the problems concerning ethnic minorities (despite the fact that in this direction after Rose Revolution of 2003 the situation was positively changed and several steps were made) We can single out still actual several main issues concerning ethnic minorities and their integration process.

  1. Among non-ethnic Georgians, especially in the compactly populated regions the level of knowledge of Georgian language is still very low.
  2. In the country the level of unemployment is quite high and ethnic minorities are no exception too. In non-urban space the level of unemployment is higher than in urban space. As a result, Georgian population has less possibility to interact with ethnic minorities in the public sphere. 
  3. Cultural and informational alliance.
  4. The level of civic alienation is quite high too.
  5. Weak civic institutionalized space doesn’t help the collaboration of ethnic groups and appropriate articulation of private interest.

            Until recently Georgian political establishment was very cautious with the ethnic politics and indecision in this regard was also quite often. Despite the individual projects and efforts carried out in recent years, it is still difficult to say that the Georgian government has consistent and effective policies in order to overcome problems caused by its ethno-religious multi-membership. Although in this sense recently there are some positive trends but the given efforts have still fragmented character and they can’t be called well-formed reflexive and coherent policy that in the near future will bring rapid and effective changes in terms of civic integration.

            As we think among the strategies of ethnic approchmant the most optimal way for Georgia is the strategy of integration. The state can develop this strategy by several ways.     

  1. Creation of stable democratic environment and institutional development.
  2. Strengthening of local self – government, what’ll promote the involvement of the citizens at the local administrative level.
  3. Education system should ensure spreading of the knowledge of state language among ethnic minorities. 
  4. To encourage development of urbanization in the regions compactly populated by ethnic minorities.
  5. Obviously, cooperation between state institutions and civil society organizations, and between the state and minorities, are very important in this process.

 

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Keywords


Georgia, ethnic minorities, multiculturalism, integration

References


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