The BaM project will look at the lives of people without a migration background living in ethnically diverse neighborhoods where everybody belongs to a minority now. In a city like Amsterdam, today only one in three youngsters under the age of fifteen has two parents born in the Netherlands. This situation, where everybody belongs to a minority, is referred to as a majority-minority context. This situation is becoming more and more common in many neighborhoods of large Western European cities. For example, in 40% of the neighborhoods of Amsterdam, people of Dutch descent are now a numerical minority.
The BaM project will do research in the harbor cities Rotterdam, Antwerp and Malmö and the service sector cities Amsterdam, Hamburg and Vienna. Part of the research is an international survey among people living in neighborhoods where everybody now belongs to a minority: majority-minority neighborhoods. How do people engage with each other in these neighborhoods? Do they experience conflicts and, if so, what are these about? What do people appreciate about the neighborhoods? With whom do they interact in the street, what connects them – or not - in the playground of their children, with whom do they interact when having coffee in a local bar?
An important aim of the project is to look whether there are differences across neighborhoods and across European cities. Are the interactions of people different between the harbor cities Rotterdam, Malmö or Antwerp? Do people experience diversity in a different way in the financial centers like Amsterdam, Hamburg or Vienna?
With the BaM project we hope to contribute to the understanding of what makes cities good places to live in. To study under which conditions people interact with each other in a way they find satisfying, and, on the other hand, when conflicts are more likely to arise and what can be done about that.
The project will deliver important outcomes for the people who live in these neighborhoods, as well as for policymakers and politicians. There are a lot of opinions in the media and in politics on migration and diversity, but people who live their daily life in a diverse setting have a lot more to say about how they experience this. The BaM project will deliver their perspectives.
The BaM project is funded by the European Research Council through an ERC Advanced Grant. BaM is carried out in cooperation with the department for Research, Information and Statistics (OIS) of the City of Amsterdam.