Advancing intercultural research and dialogue in China

4 Sep 2019

Early in July 2019 CfCSC PhD candidate and UQ sessional academic Mairead MacKinnon attended the Advancing Intercultural Research and Dialogue: Crossing Boundaries and Building Bridges conference in China. 

Held at Shanghai International Studies University (SISU), and organised by the International Association for Intercultural Research, the conference gave Mairead the opportunity to discuss her research and also raise awareness about refugees in Australia. 

Together with CfCSC Centre Associate, Dr. Aparna Hebbani, Mairead presented in a symposia with the title "The role of intercultural interaction in developing a socially and culturally inclusive Australia."  Their presentation, "Refugee parent's engagement with their children's schools: An opportunity for intercultural interaction/ contact", highlighted the findings from a larger study funded by an Australian Research Council (ARC) Linkage grant (2013-15).  As part of their research, interviews were conducted with parents from diverse cultural backgrounds (Myanmar (Karen, Karenni and Chin communities), Congo and Ethiopia) currently living in Australia. 

Mairead also made a presentation on the "Impact of media coverage on refugee belongingness" which arose out of her PhD dissertation research.  This timely study investigated the perceptions of people about the depiction of refugees in Australian media and the influence this has on public opinion as well as their own sense of belonging within the country.