Working for workplace religious diversity, equity & inclusion


Dangerous impact of Covid-19 lockdown: Rise in religious prejudice

24 Nov, 2020

The BBC summarized the key findings of a new study on diversity as follows:

Widespread working from home could lead to an increase in racism and prejudice, a new report warns (BBC).

– Workplace friendships are key to breaking down misconceptions, the England and Wales study for the Woolf Institute suggests.
– Institute founder Ed Kessler said as more people work from home they risk going “back into isolated silos”.
– He called on ministers to focus on offices and workplaces as a “vital” area for improving community relations.
– The study, conducted by polling company Survation for the Woolf Institute, which researches interfaith relations, surveyed 11,701 people.

The Study

What do we think of our neighbours? And what do they think of us? When it comes to race, religion and immigration, what divides us and what brings us together? Do we all share the same experiences of the diverse everyday world around us? Or is diversity something other people do? These are some of the questions that motivated the Woolf Institute to produce How We Get Along: The Diversity Study of England and Wales 2020.

We surveyed 11,701 people across England and Wales and asked questions concerning their attitudes towards ethnic, national and religious diversity and their experiences of it. To bring these issues closer to home, we invited respondents to share their attitudes towards a close relative marrying someone from a different background. We also explored our lived experiences of diversity both at work and among friendship groups.

The study is the largest known study of diversity undertaken in the UK. We have the data needed to drill down to the local level, to consider a wide array of demographic and socio-economic factors and to make recommendations for future policymaking in this area.

For all media enquiries, email Ben Rich.

Principal Investigator Dr Edward Kessler

Lead Researcher Dr Julian Hargreaves

The Report, Executive Summary and Appendix are free to download: