Towards an Inclusive Work Environment

In the Netherlands, the importance of an inclusive labor market is underlined by several stakeholders. Politicians, employers and employees all agree that everyone should have equal opportunities to find work, regardless of someone’s background (ethnicity, age, disability, gender, socio-economic status, religion, etc.).

Research shows that the chances of finding work are not the same for everyone and that it matters to which ‘group’ you belong to. Whether someone is high or low educated makes no difference; unequal opportunities persist. Recent studies indicate that, for example, women and young people with a migration background, have fewer chances of finding an internship or work, even if they are highly educated. “This is a very undesirable situation, not only for people with a vulnerable position on the labor market, but also for employers and Dutch society itself,” says Machteld de Jong.

In the study, Machteld de Jong and Halleh Ghorashi aim to gain insight into employers’ bias with regard to people with a vulnerable labor market position, using a biographical approach. Therefore, the life stories of twenty people with a vulnerable position on the labor market will be collected. The aim of this research is to provide knowledge about how organizations can be become more inclusive by understanding the dynamics of unconscious bias in organizations and the experiences of exclusion by people with a vulnerable position in the labor market. In this research, students with a migration or refugee background will be involved.

Supported by GAK