Experts with migrant background sought for integration forum
5 Jul 2021
The Nordic Council of Ministers is seeking experts with migrant backgrounds to provide professional input on key integration issues.
- Your input will enhance and diversify the understanding of what it takes to achieve the successful integration of new citizens in the Nordic Region.
- You have first-hand knowledge about the integration of refugees and immigrants and migrated to a Nordic country yourself.
- You will add to the existing knowledge base and target-group perspective of Nordic co-operation on the integration of refugees and immigrants.
- You will attend two annual network meetings and, working with the Nordic Council of Ministers, you will share your knowledge with other Nordic integration forums.
In 2016, the Ministers for Nordic Co-operation decided to set up a programme to work on the integration of refugees and immigrants and to focus on the comparison of experiences and the generation of new knowledge. The programme’s activities include networking between official agencies and civil society on topics such as language, newly arrived children and young people, and integration in the labour market. The programme also promotes knowledge transfer via conferences, seminars and workshops, and disseminates new research results. Examples of this work can be seen here at our webiste which disseminates knowledge about the integration of refugees and immigrants under the integration programme. The integration programme focuses on structural and cultural integration and complements work done in other sectors (such as the labour market, education and training, and social and health care) by communicating the latest knowledge in the field of integration.
A socially sustainable Nordic Region
The co-operation programme supports the vision of the Nordic Region as the most sustainable and integrated region in the world by 2030. In particular, it contributes to work on the following strategic priority:
- A socially sustainable Nordic Region – Together, we will promote an inclusive, equal and interconnected region with shared values and strengthened cultural exchange and welfare.
The Nordic Council of Ministers has drawn up an Action Plan 2021–2024 to turn these words into actions. It has 12 overarching goals and sets out the work the Council of Ministers will do during the period.
The idea behind the expert forum is to encourage closer dialogue with new Nordic citizens who would like to play a part in realising the vision, and particularly on the goals relevant to the programme for the integration of refugees and immigrants.
Your expert knowledge and migrant background will help provide:
- a well-founded and diverse knowledge base for Nordic co-operation on integration
- an overall Nordic understanding of the integration of refugees and immigrants, which builds on similar forums at national level
- better opportunities for the integration programme to incorporate a target-group perspective into its work.
The Nordic Council of Ministers will host two virtual meetings a year under the auspices of the integration programme. The emphasis will be on networking, discussion of particular themes, and the provision of information on topical issues.
The expert forum will also be invited, as appropriate, to talk to the people responsible for the Nordic Council of Ministers’ integration programme and the associated reference group, which consists of representatives of the national ministries responsible for integration. These meetings will provide you with an opportunity to express your thoughts on operational, thematic and strategic issues to do with the implementation of the integration programme.
The expert forum will consist of two representatives from each of the five Nordic nation-states, as well as Greenland, the Faroe Islands and Åland. The expert forum will operate for three years and will elect a chair each year. The chair must be from the country holding the annual Presidency of the Nordic Council of Ministers. The chair will coordinate with the Nordic Council of Ministers regarding the agenda and will meet with the Nordic Council of Ministers and the reference group for the integration programme in Q1 of each year to plan activities for the year. The Nordic Council of Ministers will act as the secretariat for the expert forum and take minutes of the meetings. Participation in the expert forum will be on a voluntary basis, and there will be no financial compensation. In special cases, the Nordic Council of Ministers will reimburse travel expenses.
Each member of the expert group must
- represent an organisation that works with integration, or participate as an individual expert in an area relevant to the integration of refugees and immigrants
- have knowledge of one or more of the following areas: the labour market; education and training; social and health care; gender equality; democracy and citizenship; segregation
- be born outside the Nordic Region and have migrated to a Nordic country
- have mastered a Nordic language and/or English fluently.
Applications and the selection process
Apply by completing the application form with details of your:
- Educational background and current job
- Thematic knowledge of the integration of refugees and immigrants
- Reasons why you would like to serve on the forum.
The reference group for the integration programme will select the members of the expert forum. The selection process will seek to ensure the maximum possible diversity in areas of expertise, age, country of origin/new home country and gender.
The opening date for applications will be 1.7.2021. The closing date will be 31.8.2021. The selection process is expected to be completed by 15.9.2021.