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Fostering inter-cultural dialogue – visionary intentions and the realities of a dedicated public space

Ronan Paddison, Marilyn Keenan, Sophie Bond


The recent advocacy of fostering inter-cultural dialogue as a means of achieving greater community cohesion raises the question of the fora through which this is likely to be achieved. While the spaces in which an awareness and respect for difference can develop spontaneously through community activism, much attention in policy circles has been given to the creation of more deliberate spaces in which such interaction can develop more meaningful – durable - interactions than the civilities of everyday light sociality. This paper explores the realities of a dedicated public space designed explicitly to foster greater inter-cultural contact and understanding, the Hidden Gardens in Glasgow. Intended as a space of contemplation as well as the celebration of diversity, the reality of its appreciation and usage is more diverse than had been initially envisaged.


DOI 10.3351/ppp.0006.0003.0002