Ethnic Diversity in Malaysia-Lessons Learned from Bio-Diversity Research

10 Pages Posted: 13 Oct 2010

See all articles by Hans-Dieter Evers

Hans-Dieter Evers

Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia

Anis Y. Yusoff

Institute of Ethnic Studies, National University of Malaysia

Shamsul A. B.

Institute of Ethnic Studies, National University of Malaysia

Date Written: October 12, 2010

Abstract

Biology and Anthropology/Sociology have dealt with issues of diversity for a long time, developing different concepts, theories and methods. In recent years there has been, if not a convergence, but at least a recognition that problems in nature and in society are interrelated. This paper attempts to use methods of biodiversity research and test their applicability for a study of ethnic relations. It is noted that the preservation of biodiversity ranks high on the agenda of researchers and politicians, whereas ethnic diversity is often associated with unrest, conflict and economic decline. We try to reverse this tendency by emphasizing social cohesion and the social and economic value of ethnic diversity. An "ethnic diversity index" is developed and proposed for further analysis of Malaysia’s plural society. This index is based on Simpson’s diversity index, commonly used in biodiversity research. Furthermore research on the interrelation of bio- and ethnic diversity is advocated.

Keywords: ethnicity, ethnic relations, ethno diversity, biodiversity, Malaysia

JEL Classification: D31

Suggested Citation

Evers, Hans-Dieter and Yusoff, Anis Y. and A. B., Shamsul, Ethnic Diversity in Malaysia-Lessons Learned from Bio-Diversity Research (October 12, 2010). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1691034 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1691034

Hans-Dieter Evers (Contact Author)

Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia ( email )

Institute of Malaysian and International Studies (
Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia
Bangi, Selangor D.E. 43600
Malaysia
+60-149456927 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.ukm.my/ikmas/

Anis Y. Yusoff

Institute of Ethnic Studies, National University of Malaysia

43600 Bandar Baru Bangi
Bangi, Selangor 06010
Malaysia

Shamsul A. B.

Institute of Ethnic Studies, National University of Malaysia

43600 Bandar Baru Bangi
Bangi, Selangor 06010
Malaysia

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