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The Monitor's holistic design helps identify many factors underpinning society's persistent challenges. However, the Monitor also has limitations.

The Monitor’s design, which accounts for the interdependence of institutions and social forces, helps to identify the factors in a society’s response to diversity that are either contributing to or hindering progress towards pluralism. However, like any other assessment tool, the Monitor has its limitations. Its multidimensional, multivariate design allows for a comprehensive assessment of pluralism. However, this does not mean that the Monitor is exhaustive. It produces an indicative picture of the state of pluralism and offers a starting point for important conversations and further research into ongoing efforts to strengthen pluralism.

Forms of Diversity

The Monitor uses ethno-cultural (ethnic, racial, Indigenous, religious, linguistic) and migrant diversity as its primary focus. Ethno-cultural and migrant-based group differences come in a multitude of forms that can combine in even more varied ways and are implicated in pressing challenges facing many societies. Yet diversity is constituted by other forms: including age, gender, disability and education, among others. Focussing on ethno-cultural and migrant diversity supports greater understanding of factors that underpin many conflicts and sources of instability but does not account for all types of diversity.


Intersectionality is central to the Monitor project and its design but this approach is still in developing stages. Gender equality emphasizing the treatment of women and girls within groups is currently built into the methodology. Sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression and sex characteristics (SOGIESC) are not part of the current Monitor framework and methodology due to . Assessment teams do identify SOGIESC identity issues in some reports but not on a systematic basis. Engagement based on Monitor reports is a critical element of the Monitor project and intentionally seeks to develop greater understanding of SOGIESC identity dynamics in a country with the aim of further developing this aspect of intersectionality in Monitor assessments.

Groups Selected for Assessments

Who is assessed? What groups in society are the focus of assessments? Assessment teams implementing the Monitor methodology and framework determine the answers to these questions. Teams are asked to select peoples or groups that will best help tell the story of pluralism in a country. Limitations to report length result in teams focussing on anywhere from two to four groups in society. This means that not all ethno-cultural, religious or socioeconomic groups are captured in each assessed country, as the current design for the production of a Monitor report does not yet allow for a more expansive approach. Using these initial Monitor reports to help identify further research on salient issues is central to the Monitor project and recognizes the potential for running further assessments to include more groups.

National Scope

Monitor assessments emphasize factors and variables operating at the national level. Reports include relevant subnational factors where these are directly implicated in events observable at the national level. Assessment teams decide when and how to include evidence from the subnational level. While the current framework and methodology make it impracticable to systematically implement the Monitor subnationally, the Centre is excited to see how some partners are exploring adaptation of the Monitor to conduct subnational assessments.


Monitor reports produce findings on significant issues at a particular moment in time. Assessment teams focus on contemporary dynamics for each indicator while drawing on longer historical trends to provide sufficient context. Key issues addressed in Monitor reports are often enduring, unfolding over long periods of time, but can always be overtaken by current events. The Centre is tracking new developments for each report with the aim of highlighting changes in the status of important issues and the implications for pluralism. We encourage readers to sign up to the Centre’s email list to be updated on a regular basis.