[EN] Video Transcript

In this unit, we’ll explore cross-cultural interactions across the Euro-Mediterranean regions through a multitude of avenues such as social media, Internet chat, and in the neighbourhood and public spheres. We find that our Survey data show social media is increasingly the most-frequent avenue for southern and eastern Mediterraneans at 25%; while only 5% of Europeans prefer this method. Our experts proffer their opinions on this data, plus the European preference for more casual cross-cultural interactions in the public space, at a rate of 39% compared with 13% for southern and eastern Mediterraneans. Overall, data show that more than half of the Europeans had interacted with a person from the other shore over the past 12 months, compared to only 35% of southern and eastern Mediterraneans.

Across the three waves since 2009, the Survey confirms virtual exchange as the main source of interaction for southern and eastern Mediterraneans. Neighbourhood encounters continue to steadily increase in Europe and decrease in southern and eastern Mediterranean countries.

Stating that “…interculturalism is seen as a most appropriate tool to promote in societal creativity, trust, mutual-knowledge, and prejudice reduction...”, Ricard Zapata-Barrero notes that interculturalism is considered an appropriate method for the promotion of dialogue, interactions at the individual level, and a way to avoid social exclusion and social inequalities.

Aliki Moschis-Gauguet discusses cross-culturalism in the context of being studied in cities, due to higher interactions with people from different social and religious backgrounds in public, neighbourhood and employment spheres. We see that Europeans meet southern and eastern Mediterraneans in these venues at 26% to 39%, while conversely online interactions are more prevalent for southern and eastern Mediterraneans at 25%.

Bernard Abrignani highlights the value of travel as a means of mutual and intercultural understanding, allowing for personal contact. Citing the age-old question of travel during the Age of Enlightenment, Abrignani looks at whether it is still as valuable in the present-day age of Internet technology and the ease of virtual travel without leaving the computer screen. In fact, our Survey shows a difference according to age populations, with 40% of Europeans aged 15-29 having talked to or met a southern or eastern Mediterranean in the previous 12 months in the public sphere, while 32% of southern or eastern Mediterraneans in the same age group still use social media and the Internet for interactions, with public casual encounters being much less frequent, even for the younger generation (15%).

Last modified: Thursday, 4 November 2021, 7:57 AM