Read the text and explain what multiculturalism is and how it affects state policies.


Multiculturalism relates to communities containing multiple cultures. The term is used in two broad ways, either descriptively or normatively. As a descriptive term, it usually refers to the simple fact of cultural diversity: it is generally applied to the demographic make-up of a specific place, sometimes at the organizational level, e.g. schools, businesses, neighborhoods, cities, or nations. As a normative term, it refers to ideologies or policies that promote this diversity or its institutionalization. In this sense, multiculturalism is a society “at ease with the rich tapestry of human life and the desire amongst people to express their own identity in the manner they see fit.”

Two different and seemingly inconsistent strategies have developed through different Government policies and strategies. The first focuses on interaction and communication between different cultures. (Such approaches are also often known as interculturalism.) The second centers on diversity and cultural uniqueness. A common aspect of many policies following the second approach is that they avoid presenting any specific ethnic, religious, or cultural community values as central.

Multiculturalism is often contrasted with the concepts of assimilationism and has been described as a “salad bowl” or “cultural mosaic” rather than a “melting pot.”

The term multiculturalism is most often used in reference to Western nation-states, which had seemingly achieved a de facto single national identity during the 18th and/or 19th centuries. Multiculturalism has been an official policy in several Western nations since the 1970s, for reasons that varied from country to country, including the fact that many of the great cities of the Western world are increasingly made of a mosaic of cultures.

Many nation-states in Africa, Asia, and the Americas are culturally diverse, and are “multicultural” in a descriptive sense. In some, communalism is a major political issue. The policies adopted by these states often have parallels with multiculturalist policies in the Western world, but the historical background is different, and the goal may be a mono-cultural or mono-ethnic nation-building.

Text 13

Read the text and describe the team roles created by R.M.Belbin.

Team roles

Every team has to have individuals to perform a number of roles. One of the most influential models on identifying the necessary roles in team has been created by R.M.Belbin who highlighted the following distinctive roles:

1. Plant: an individual who is creative, imaginative and good at solving difficult problems. The weakness of these individuals is that while they are occupied in thinking, they tend to ignore details.

2. Resource investigator: extrovert, good at communicating and finding what is needed in achieving tasks and effective in seizing opportunities. These individuals tend to be over-optimistic and can be over-enthusiastic and lose interest once their enthusiasm dies.

3. Coordinator: confident, good at making decisions, delegates well, but they can be manipulative.

4. Shaper: dynamic individuals who like challengers and can thrive when faced with obstacles. However, they can provoke and hurt others emotionally.

5. Monitor-evaluator: strategic and sober individuals who are skilful in making good judgements. These people can be too critical and can kill others’ enthusiasm and inspirations.

6. Team-worker: mild in character, cooperative, participative, a good listener. However, these individuals can be indecisive and can be easily influenced by others.

7. Implementer: reliable, disciplined, efficient, good at turning ideas into practical solutions. They can be inflexible and slow to respond to changes.

8. Completer-finisher: anxious, conscientious, looks for errors. They often worry and can be nit-pickers.

9. Specialist: self-starting, single-minded individuals who can provide information and knowledge when needed. However, they can dwell on technicalities and very often cannot see the big picture.

 One must be aware that individuals do not have a single role at all times. Employees tend to perform different roles according to the nature of the project. Individuals can also perform multiple roles and need to achievethe team goals. However, there are people who are likely to play similar roles in what they do due to the nature of their characters and personality.


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