Refugees' exclusion at work and the intersection with gender: Insights from the Turkish-Syrian border

Lena Knappert*, Angela Kornau, Meltem Figengül

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Today, about three million Syrian refugees are living in Turkey. This study investigates one key driver of refugees' societal integration, their inclusion or exclusion at work, with a particular focus on the intersection of refugee status and gender. To that end, we conducted and analyzed 20 semistructured interviews with male and female refugees, employers, and experts from governmental and nongovernmental organizations in Turkey. Building on our findings, we propose a multilayered framework that illustrates the interplay between national facilitators of refugees' exclusion, precarious employment practices within organizations, and refugees' individual-level implications. Further, we show that this interplay is particularly disadvantageous for female refugees, as it is when, for example, gendered roles prevail in their home and host societies. We discuss implications for future research and conclude by pointing out the relevance of this study for current political debates and various stakeholders inside and outside of Turkey.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)62-82
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Vocational Behavior
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Exclusion
  • Gender
  • Inclusion
  • Intersectionality
  • Refugees
  • Turkey

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