Multicultural education: education in and for a culturally diverse society requires national attention. Key research questions are: identifying and defining the range of issues regarding values, competencies and world views; the role of the school community in ensuring students’ capacity to operate in a culturally diverse society, and the effect of privatised schooling; the role of language pluralism as the basis for cross-cultural communication confidence.

Cultural diversity and the arts: the creative cities/creative nation/ economic development nexus is becoming increasingly apparent. As nations compete for high quality/ value adding immigrants, the quality of cultural life and the capacity of cities and regions to offer deep cultural support and creativity will become an increasingly improtant part of their “pull”, their attraction for potential immigrants. Australia has a very poorly developed sense of this important role and national arts policy barely notices its implications. An arts research agenda that documents the issues and the potential strategies for building a more creative culturally complex society is now of major importance.

The role of DIAC’s Multicultural Affairs as a driver in partnerships with Education and the Arts is central in building such a set of research agendas.