Bonn 12 November 2020. On the occasion of the first international „Social Cohesion Week“, the German Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE) is launching a unique new cooperative knowledge website dedicated entirely to understanding social cohesion and how it can be bolstered and preserved: the Social Cohesion Hub (www.socialcohesion.info/). The site is based on cooperative contributions by researchers, policy practitioners, state- and non-state organizations working on social cohesion and its promotion. The website is an important first step in the development of an international expert community jointly working on the timely topic. The Social Cohesion Hub was made possible by financial support of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development.
Social cohesion is the foundation for every society. Crises and polarization threaten it in many places nowadays. Economic collapse, climate change, migration, the decay of democracies and the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic erode the trust people have in others and in their state institutions. This creates rifts in societal consensus. Faced with these developments, it becomes ever more important to understand what social cohesion is and how it is strengthened.
“The Social Cohesion Hub creates the space for an international exchange on how cohesion within societies can be strengthened”, said Anna-Katharina Hornidge, Director of DIE, on the occasion of the Hub’s launch. “It provides a platform for mutual learning and is designed to foster the dialogue between different perspectives and actor groups”, she continued. The platform fills a critical gap by linking research with governmental and non-governmental organisations that want to strengthen social cohesion.
The Social Cohesion Hub has four major areas. One provides an informative overview and easy way of comparison between different concepts of social cohesion used both in research and policy-making. A second gathers and provides links to web sources of data on social cohesion. A third area hosts an up-to-date library with research and policy publications. Finally, the Hub hosts an accessible worldwide databank of projects aiming to foster social cohesion with further information and contact details.
The Social Cohesion Hub is available online via www.socialcohesion.info. Institutions and organisations that are working on social cohesion worldwide are invited to use the Hub to share their insights, call attention to data and projects on Social Cohesion and use the platform to network.