Unblocking the Barriers to Participation of Black and Minority Ethnic Communities in the Decision-making Processes: The Potential of Multimedia
Cerebrating diversity has become one of the most important exports from political science into everyday language usage. As many political boundaries continue to fall under the weight of such phenomena as globalisation, recognising and tapping the potential of diversity is equally becoming a crucial paradigm in the relentless pursuit of human progress. However, despite the recognition of a manifold benefits arising from integrating diversity in many spheres of the human existence, the mechanisms for achieving that goal are still relatively limited. This appears like an irony, especially given the providence of robust communication tools offered by the communications revolution that has come in the form of Information and Communications Technology (ICT). What is it that stops effective engagement of diversity in many decision-making processes? The aim of this paper, therefore, is to explore the landscape of barriers and incentives to engagement of diversity in decision-making processes, with a view to examining the potential of multimedia techniques in breaking the barriers. In particular, participation of minority and ethnic communities in planning and design decision-making processes is explored within the context of a specific case study in the United Kingdom. The paper concludes by suggesting construction of multimedia tools based on a triple-dimensioned agenda of knowledge transfer, data processing, and entertainment as the key building blocks for a framework that cuts across multicultural boundaries.
Keywords: Diversity, Planning Participation, Multimedia
Prof. Lamine Mahdjoubi
Professor of ICT in Built Environment, Faculty of the Built Environment, University of the West of England
Dr. Cletus Moobela
Senior Lecturer, School of Environmental Design and Management, University of Portsmouth