Integration Hub Reveals Mixed Fortunes of Britain’s Minorities

Cutting-edge new Demos Integration Hub maps the changing face of Britain’s diversity, revealing a mixed picture in the integration and upward mobility of ethnic minority communities

Britain’s Indian community is leading the way in integration and economic advancement, out-performing other minorities and increasingly the White British population 

By contrast, the Pakistani and Bangladeshi communities continue to live more segregated lives and lag behind in education, health and employment

A ground-breaking new online Integration Hub was launched today by cross-party think tank Demos, bringing together cutting-edge research and statistics on ethno-cultural integration and segregation in modern Britain.

It reveals that Britain’s Indian community is leading the way as a success story of integration and economic advancement – not only out-performing most other minority groups across a host of measures, but also the White British population. For example:

  • 75.7 per cent of British Indian students in England obtain five or more ‘Good’ GCSE (including English and Maths), compared to 60.5 per cent of White British students, and 13.6 per cent of British Indian students obtain three A*-A grades or better, compared to 10 per cent of White British students[i]
  • 26 per cent of British Indian students in England go on to university at the top-third of Higher Education Institutes, compared to 15 per cent of White British students[ii]
  • British Indians are over-represented in the medical profession, accounting for 12 per cent of all doctors in the UK – while accounting for only 2.3 per cent of the population[iii]
  • The proportion of economically active British Indian women in Great Britain is continuing to grow steadily, increasing from 60 per cent in 1993 to 70 per cent in 2013[iv]
  • 12 per cent of British Indians are in mixed ethnic partnerships, compared to seven per cent of British Pakistanis[v]
  • TBC – Indians live in most mixed parts of the country (ie. NW London)

This contrasts significantly with the British Pakistani and Bangladeshi communities, which are found to be significantly lagging behind other minority groups and the White British population on large numbers of key socio-economic measures. For example:

  • Almost 60 per cent of British Pakistanis live in the top quartile of the most segregated areas in England
  • The employment rate for British Pakistani and Bangladeshi people is 49 per cent, compared to 73 per cent for White British people[vi]
  • 44 per cent of British Pakistanis youth in Great Britain are unemployed and out of education, compared to 17 per cent of White British youth[vii]
  • British Pakistani women have some of the lowest economic participation rates in Great Britain, with 59 per cent economically inactive[viii]
  • Only 6.4 per cent of British Pakistani and 5.5 per cent of British Bangladeshi students in England receive three A*-A grades or better: roughly half the number of White British and Indian students[ix]
  • Both communities are over-represented in low-skilled and low-paying occupations: 25 per cent of Pakistani men are working as taxi-drivers, while around 50 per cent of Bangladeshi men work in restaurants[x]
  • British Pakistanis have the lowest life expectancy in England, with men on average living to 78.7 years – compared to 81.4 years for White British men[xi]
  • Transnational marriage is particularly common in the Pakistani community – around half of all Muslim Pakistanis in Britain married someone born in Pakistan[xii]

Other Key Trends and Findings of the Integration Hub

  • In 2011, more than 40 per cent of non-White ethnic minorities were living in wards where less than half the population is White (up from only 25 per cent in 2001)
  • While across Britain as a whole, we are becoming somewhat more mixed, this is least true of Muslim communities (especially Pakistanis and Bangladeshis) and the White British[xiii]
  • A higher proportion of ethnic minorities (10.3 per cent) are found in the top higher professional occupational grouping than White British (9.8 per cent)[xiv]
  • Ethnic minorities are more likely to be classified as poor. For instance, 57 per cent of Pakistanis and 46 per cent of Bangladeshis live in relative poverty, compared to 16 per cent of the White British[xv]
  • The groups most likely to partner across ethnic boundaries are Black Caribbean men (48 per cent) and Chinese women (39.5 per cent)[xvi].
  • The number of White British people with only white friends fell to 37 per cent in 2015, but ethnic minorities report more positive interactions with White people than vice versa[xvii]
  • More than a third of the ethnic minority population do not have English as a first language[xviii]
  • In London, 22 per cent of people have a main language other than English. London also has the highest proportion of mixed ethnicity households (of more than one person) at 20 per cent[xix]
  • Minorities are more likely to get their news online, more likely to read broadsheet newspapers (in particular the Guardian) and more likely to use Facebook than White British people. They are less likely to drink and smoke (58 per cent) than the White British (70 per cent)[xx]


About the Demos Integration Hub

Drawing on data from a wide range of public sources and leading independent research, the Hub provides a data-driven picture of the nation’s changing social and ethnic fabric, to encourage a more evidence-led debate about the integration and segregation of ethnic minorities, and the openness and cohesion of British society.

The Integration Hub reveals a varied picture of modern Britain, in which many minority groups are benefiting from rapid upward social mobility, and others continue to face entrenched poverty and an intensifying disconnection from mainstream life. It explores how both cultural preferences and economic inequality have played a role in determining communities’ differing levels of segregation, and their overall prosperity in British society.

Developed to be accessible to policy-makers, local and national politicians, the media and the general public, the Integration Hub focuses on five core policy areas: residence, work and welfare, society and everyday life, education and attitudes/identity. It combines quantitative data on a wide range of indicators, with a literature review of analysis from the world’s leading demographers, economists and social scientists.


Commenting on the launch of the Integration Hub, the project’s lead, David Goodhart, said:
“The aim of the site is to be the primary reference point for the informed debate about integration issues in the UK. It is politically neutral, and will change as the facts change and our understanding deepens.”

“We understand that in a liberal society, the very terms ‘integration’ and ‘segregation’ are slippery and contested. Our work is not informed by a narrow definition of integration, rather it sees it as a broad and complex process of convergence in life chances and to a lesser extent lived experience.”

“Upward mobility for minorities is harder if they are not connected to mainstream networks. More generally, collective action and the pooling of resources is easier when people share elements of a common culture, ascribe to some common norms and have a degree of mutual trust and familiarity across ethnic boundaries. Achieving that in what is likely to be an era of continuing high immigration is one of the most important policy challenges for the next generation.” 


Chair of the Integration Hub’s Advisory Group, Trevor Phillips, said:

“It is clear that we have never been more diverse than we are now, and anything that makes those differences less opaque will benefit all of us. While today, we have access to more data than ever before, much of this information is difficult to navigate and understand. We aim to address this through this Integration Hub, which brings together the most comprehensive collection of research and data on the topic of ethnic diversity ever developed in the UK, and will be continuously updated over time. This is our contribution to ensuring that our new diversity promotes cooperation and prosperity above all else.”

Research Director of Demos, Duncan O’Leary, said:

“The issue of integration raises fundamental questions about how we live together, and how societies and economies make the most of their citizens. But rarely is a complete picture brought together, allowing us to track change over time and compare the experiences of different groups. This Hub will provide an invaluable resource for anyone interested in mapping how society is changing – both now and in the future.”


Sophie Gaston, Press and Communications Manager, Demos
[email protected]
ph. 0207 367 6325 (Out of Hours: 074727 45678)

[i] Department for Education. 2014. GCSE and equivalent attainment by pupil characteristics: 2013. Department for Education. 2014. GCE A-level outcomes by ethnicity.

[ii] Department for Education. 2014. Statistics: destinations of key stage 4 and key stage 5 pupils.

[iii] General Medical Council. 2015. List of Registered Medical Practitioners – statistics. [ONLINE] Available at:

[iv] Department for Work and Pensions. 2014. Labour market status by ethnic group: data to September 2013.

[v] Office for National Statistics. 2014. What Does the 2011 Census Tell Us About Inter-ethnic Relationships?—inter-ethnic-relationships.html.

[vi] Demos, based on 2011 data.

[vii] Department for Work and Pensions. 2014. Labour market status by ethnic group: data to September 2013.

[viii] Department for Work and Pensions. 2014. Labour market status by ethnic group: data to September 2013.

[ix] Department for Education. 2014. GCE A-level outcomes by ethnicity.

[x] Equality and Human Rights Commission. 2010. How fair is Britain? Equality, Human Rights and Good Relations in 2010.; Policy Exchange. 2014. A Portrait of Modern Britain.

[xi] PH Rees, PN Wohland and PD Norman, ‘The estimation of mortality for ethnic groups at local scale within the United Kingdom’, Social Science and Medicine 69, pp 1592–1607, 2009 (updated to 2014)

[xii] Home Office. 2012. Marriage-related migration to the UK .

[xiii] Eric Kaufmann. 2013. Half Full or Half Empty?: How Has Ethnic Segregation in England and Wales Changed Between 2001 and 2011.; Ludi Simpson/Centre on Dynamics of Ethnicity. 2012. More segregation or more mixing?

[xiv] Office for National Statistics, 2011 Census: Aggregate data (England and Wales). UK Data Service Census Support. Downloaded from: This information is licensed under the terms of the Open Government Licence [].

[xv] Yaojun Li & Anthony Heath/Nuffield CSI. 2015. CSI 10: Are we becoming more or less ethnically-divided? [Accessed 11 May 15]

[xvi] Office For National Statistics. 2014. What Does the 2011 Census Tell Us About Inter-ethnic Relationships? [Accessed 11 May 15].

[xvii] Peter Kellner/YouGov. 2015. Why we like migrants but not immigration.

[xviii] Office for National Statistics, 2011 Census: Aggregate data (England and Wales). UK Data Service Census Support. Downloaded from: This information is licensed under the terms of the Open Government Licence [].

[xix] As above.

[xx] University of Essex. Institute for Social and Economic Research and NatCen Social Research, Understanding Society: Waves 1-4, 2009-2013. 6th Edition. Colchester, Essex: UK Data Archive [distributor], November 2014. SN: 6614,; Facebook analysis: Ipsos Mori Tech-Tracker. 2015. Bespoke analysis for Demos.