Prof Michelle Pace successfully organised and participated as a speaker in a two-day conference on “Migrants, Refugees and Asylum Seekers in the Danish Labour Market: Challenges and Opportunities”, October 5-6, 2020.
More on the research project:
What opportunities and challenges are associated with the integration of refugees, migrants and asylum seekers into the Danish labour market? This is the question examined by the Danish team of researchers in the SIRIUS project (Skills and Integration of Migrants, Refugees and Asylum Applicants in European Labour Markets) over the past three years.
There has been a political focus in Denmark in recent years on getting foreigners into the labour market as quickly as possible, and although there may be differences in their statuses/circumstances (for example, refugees and migrants), some of the foreigners interviewed for the project have experienced some of the same barriers preventing their smooth integration into the Danish labour market. These barriers include language, cultural codes and norms and a lack of a network, which can otherwise often be a good route into the Danish labour market. In addition, some of the interviewees experience that they do not get a job corresponding to their qualifications, and that this is due to the fact that they encounter a system that is not necessarily geared to take account of the individual foreigner.
Professor of Global Studies at Roskilde University, Michelle Pace, who is the leader of the Danish team of researchers, concludes – on the basis of the research project – that the current focus on getting foreigners into the labour market at quickly as possible causes problems:
“The potential benefits of good labour market-oriented efforts are great, but right now we can see that a number of foreigners do not really have the opportunity to contribute with the qualifications they have. Our research shows that it would be beneficial to work on developing a system that better assesses the skills that foreigners bring with them to Denmark, so that we can ensure that they can take up jobs that reflect their skills and experiences” explains Professor Michelle Pace.