“May 21 is the UN World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development. Given today’s conflicts, political uncertainties and support for nationalism, it is important to be reminded of the benefits that diversity brings to development.
When it comes to ethnic groups that may represent different cultures, there has been a discussion among scholars about the impact of ethnic diversity on conflict and cooperation, and on economic development. According to these discussions—and setting aside the very real ethical questions such discussions bring—ethnic diversity is a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it may result in a lack of cooperation between ethnic groups, due to linguistic, cultural or religious differences, which in the worst case may lead to violent conflicts and thus be harmful for economic development. On the other hand, ethnic diversity may act as a ‘melting pot’ of abilities, experiences and cultures, which may lead to increased innovation and creativity…(read more)“