Modeling of Syndrome of Ethnic Convergence and Divergence Policies in Iran

Document Type : Original Article


1 -Associate Professor of Political Geography, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Mashhad, Iran

2 -Ph.D Student of Political Geography, Kharazmi University, Tehran, Iran


There are several theories to understand the causes of convergence and divergence in multi- ethnic countries. Each scientific field based on its nature considers to the ethnic issues. Sociologists have referred to structural aspects of the issue such as geographic and human issues of the region, and political scientists consider the issues such as the role of ethnic elites and legitimacy of political system and finally, psychologists consider the mental issues of society. A comprehensive approach to consider the role of different geographic factors (natural or human) is essential. Rational management is one of effective factors. It shows that the governments have reached to the rational understanding and awareness about the existence of weaknesses and potentialities.
The research methodology adopted here is descriptive- analytic and data gathering procedure is based on library findings.
Research findings
Effective factors on the convergence are as follows: firstly, internal factors affecting the convergence include mutual trust between the people and the government, satisfaction of the people, decentralization and de-concentration of industries and decision- making centers, strengthening ethnic identities in direction with national identity, the power of central government to guarantee convergence, promotion of education, constitutional rules and its role in national integration. Secondly, external factors affecting the convergence include development and promotion of cross- border ethnics and cultures, the policies of regional stability, religious centrality of Iran in the region, economic communications with neighboring countries and development of border markets, aggressive policies toward ethnics in neighboring countries. Factors which affect divergence are as follows: firstly, regional and trans-regional factors affecting the divergence include the boundary location of minorities, return in ethnic policies of neighboring countries, geopolitics of the ethnicity and instrumental use of ethnicity in foreign policies, the US hegemony and its effect on the divergence. Secondly, external factors affecting divergence include the factor of religion, ethnicity and language, the topographic structure of Iran inappropriate communicational system, imbalance in participation of ethnicities in political power, the luck of development.
Result and Discussion
Divergence and convergence forces are central in determining wherefore of the composition and consolidation of Iran's nation, and their investigation is more vital. Some of these forces have relatively fixed role in divergence and convergence process and some of them are not stable and their function maybe change. So, they can be used in both divergence and convergence processes -depending on political motivations. For example, central government of Iran can employ these forces to develop convergence and national unity and vice versa, interventionist forces and opposition groups can use these forces to collapse national unity. Based on research findings, I.R.I has three options: integrative model, neutralization or maintenance of status quo and divergent model. Each model has its results and consequences.


Volume 11, Issue 37
March 2015
Pages 71-100
  • Receive Date: 24 April 2012
  • Revise Date: 19 June 2014
  • Accept Date: 08 July 2014
  • First Publish Date: 21 March 2015