Welcome to the III International Conference RESMI 2021 (Higher Education Network for Intercultural Mediation), to be held totally online this year, on the 21st and 22nd October, 2021. The theme of this year’s conference will be: “Intercultural Mediation: Communication, Citizenship and Development”.

The Organising Committee invites all those interested in the theme of the Conference to participate with the presentation of their work. Proposals for papers, round tables and workshops will be accepted within four thematic areas (TA):

TA 1. Intercultural mediation: education and citizenship

The concept of intercultural mediation in the context of an education for citizenship has come to acquire a growing importance in the socio-educational domain, which cannot be indifferent to the processes of globalisation and the intensification of international mobility. Such a view of education emphasises commitment to the development of competences for a democratic culture, which necessarily includes the valorisation of cultural diversity. This perspective requires educators, teachers, trainers and other educational agents to assume the challenge of a “transformational praxis” committed to the principles and practices which orient intercultural mediation and which contribute to the development of intercultural values, attitudes and knowledge. These in turn permit individuals to take on the role of intercultural mediators. Against this background, this TA aims to provide a space for reflection and exchange of knowledge and practice about the construction of academic and professional knowledge in the field of cultural diversity and the practices of intercultural mediation in diverse socioeducational contexts.

TA2. Intercultural mediation and territorial cohesion

Expressions of globalisation, migrations, the permeability and resistance of frontiers, and of significant multiculturality are multiple and have diverse impacts on people’s geographical, social, and symbolic territories. Important challenges are raised to the construction of cohesive, humane, and peaceful societies which are welcoming to multiple cultures and forms of human and social expression. This TA will focus on the opportunities and contributions of communication and intercultural dialogue, of diverse citizenship and intercultural mediation development projects for the construction of social and symbolic spaces of multicultural, intercultural, peaceful and significant coexistence in contemporary societies. We invite proposals which articulate communication, development and citizenship with intercultural mediation, reflecting on the way it is implemented and fostered in concrete territories, be these geographical, human and/or symbolic.  

TA 3. Intercultural mediation in health  

In the context of intercultural mediation in health, it is essential to consider the analysis of the question of healthcare provision for migrants and ethnicities. In a professionalising relationship between healthcare and education in health, we assume that accessibility and quality of care for immigrants suffer from the language barrier, sociocultural barriers and the consequences of inter-ethnic tensions. In order to minimise these barriers as much as possible, good practices of intercultural mediation in health must be promoted.

This event assumes this premise from different thematic perspectives: immigration, health and citizenship; intercultural mediation in health and the role of health professionals; cultural mediation in health; intercultural mediation in mental health; immigration and the public health sector; the (re)construction of intercultural healthcare institutions; intercultural mediation and ICTs; access of immigrants to healthcare in Portugal; contexts in health in mediation and intercultural mediation; Intercultural Mediation programmes in healthcare institutions; good practice in healthcare for intercultural mediation.

TA 4. Challenges for intercultural mediation

Currently, in an age of hyperglobalisation, accelerated technological advances and permeable frontiers, we live in societies increasingly characterised by plurality – of faith, of language, of nationality, of ethnicity, among others. In this context, conceptions, and preconceptions, of identity and simplified, at times confrontational, (inter)cultural representations emerge, fed by media and political discourses which are populist, short-term and supposedly local. Increasing economic and social inequalities give strength to voices which apeal to nostalgia, discrimination and the marginalisation of difference, in contrast to the general efforts in force to build societies where interculturality, harmony and mutual respect predominate. In the context of TA 4, our aim is to confront this (national and transnational) reality, seeking to understand the role of language, of culture and the arts in intercultural mediation and in the construction of fairer, more inclusive societies which are more aware of their own plurality.

The official languages of the conference are: Portuguese, Spanish, French and English.

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