Reviving agency: Taking time and making space for rethinking diversity and inclusion

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The path of social inclusion has proven difficult for minority groups in the European context. In this article, we focus on the inclusion of refugees, particularly in the labor market, and show how the difficulties they faced were related to dominant discourses on migration. Uncovering the hegemonic assumptions within these discourses is crucial in order to enable a rethinking of diversity issues and inclusion. We addressed this through an intervention research, which was part of an empowerment project for refugees. The research included and connected refugees engaged in searching for work to Dutch professionals engaged with diversity issues. Through social intervention, this research aimed to create empowerment through critical reflection on the ways that the power of dominant discourses works in the practice of everyday life. By contrasting the discursive positioning of participants with different backgrounds, the research created alternative spaces for reflection. This, in turn, led to the production of alternative narratives and allowed participants to claim agency in the face of the dominant discourses. © 2013 Taylor & Francis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)161-174
JournalEuropean Journal of Social Work
Issue number2
Early online date4 Apr 2013
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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