Social and community participation of immigrants in Australia

Siew-Ean Khoo, Australian National University
Jeromey Temple, Australian National University

Immigrants’ participation in social and community groups and activities has the potential to contribute to developing friendships and a shared sense of community between migrants and local residents, thereby contributing to their social integration and social cohesion in multicultural societies. This paper uses data from the 2006 Australian General Social Survey to examine the involvement of immigrants in social activities in the community and compare their social and community participation with that of native-born Australians. This is the first survey to collect nationally representative data on immigrants’ social and community involvement, as well as information about their migration visa category, duration of residence and other background characteristics, allowing for analysis of their social and community participation by these characteristics. Information was collected on several measures of social and community participation, including attendance at community events, active involvement in various types of social and community groups and organizations, and engagement in a variety of civic activities. Multivariate logistic regression is used to examine migrant characteristics that are associated with the different types of social and community participation and in comparison with native-born Australians. The implications of the findings in relation to the social integration of migrants in Australian society are discussed.

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Presented in Session 74: Integration Processes Of Migrants