Nordic co-operation on integration and inclusion

Current Theme

Labour Market Integration of Female Refugees



Research shows that women born abroad who come to the Nordic Region have greater difficulty finding work than men born abroad.

The number of people in work in the Nordic countries is high compared to other nations, particularly the number of women. Indeed, a high rate of employment for women is one of the basic pillars of the Nordic welfare model. However, the employment gap between those born in the Nordic Region and those born abroad has widened.

The fact that it takes longer for newly arrived women to establish themselves in the labour market than it does men has been the subject of research at both national and Nordic level. The OECD has studied why a significantly smaller proportion of refugee women find jobs in the Nordic countries – not only in relation to those already living in the country in question but also compared to male refugees.

Several factors influence the job prospects of new arrivals, including their qualifications, previous experience and health. As far as all of these factors are concerned, women refugees tend to be at a disadvantage compared to their male counterparts. Many refugees come from countries with poor educational systems, particularly for women, and where levels of employment for women are low.

The combination of women taking more parental leave than men means that many women – particularly those with lower levels of education – are at risk of exclusion from the world or work. This group risks being locked into a welfare trap, resulting in a loss of personal autonomy, social exclusion and a greater risk of ill health.

Getting immigrant women into work is an important issue from both a personal and a socio-economic perspective. If the proportion of women born abroad with jobs were as high as it is for women born in the country concerned, GDP would go up, unemployment would go down, and public finances would improve. However, if the current trend continues, there is concern that the children of immigrant women could also be affected. Living in a household where the mother goes out to work has many other positive effects that the merely financial, e.g. it enhances the woman’s position within the family and improves her opportunities to influence and be a role model for her children.

The research indicates that a range of measures is needed to improve employment prospects for women born abroad:

  • Integration work should start as soon as possible, and there is a great need for outreach work
  • More training and employment courses are needed in sectors where women are predominant
  • Qualification systems and in-service training need to be adapted to meet the needs of women born abroad to a greater extent
  • Civil society has an important role to play in this work. Close collaboration between local authorities and civil society helps newly arrived women establish themselves, e.g. by building networks and helping them learn the language. The private sector can also help with social activities or mentoring programmes.

Under the Learning heading, we examine integration initiatives in different parts of the Nordic Region. All of these have proved effective in facilitating the integration of newly arrived women, and have led, directly or indirectly, to employment and the ability of women to support themselves. To the left, you will find research and news on this theme.

Here you find videos in which women born abroad talk about their experiences of finding work in the Nordic countries

Research on the theme

SORTERA INNEHÅLL:
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Work

4 Jan 2019

Enhanced Labour Market Opportunities for Immigrant Women – case studies from arctic cities

This publication is the outcome of a comparative study focusing on immigrant women’s access to the labour market in small and medium-sized [...]

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Work

20 Sep 2018

Triple Disadvantage? A first overview of the integration of refugee women

45% of refugees in Europe are women, yet little is known on their integration outcomes and the specific challenges they face. This report su [...]

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Work

20 Jun 2018

Kunskapsöversikt: Nyanländas etablering på den svenska arbetsmarknaden

I denna rapport försöker vi bidra till ökad kunskap om nyanländas arbetsmarknadsetablering i Sverige och vad som påverkar denna. Utifr [...]

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Work

20 Jun 2018

Hur skapar vi en mer jämställd arbetsmarknadsetablering?

En studie av Arbetsförmedlingens förmedlingsverksamhet och insatser ur ett jämställdhetsperspektiv [...]

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Work

20 Jun 2018

Progression i Etableringsuppdraget? En kohorts- och jämställdhetsanalys av arbetssökande i Etableringsuppdraget

Syftet med denna rapport är att undersöka om det sker en progression inom Arbetsförmedlingens etableringsuppdrag, d v s om myndigheten b [...]

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Work

20 Jun 2018

Sådan får de bedste kommuner flygtningekvinder i beskæftigelse

Det handler om at sætte tidligt ind og motivere, når kommuner skal hjælpe kvindelige flygtninge i arbejde. Det viser en kortlægning af i [...]

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Work

20 Jun 2018

Labour Market Integration of Female Refugees – A comparative study of the Swedish and Norwegian labout markets

Despite the considerable attention the labour market integration of female refugees receives from policy-makers and researchers, their emplo [...]

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Work

20 Jun 2018

Arbetsförmedlingens Återrapportering 2017 Handlingsplan för att fler utrikes födda kvinnor ska vara sysselsatta i arbete eller studier, 2017-2018

Arbetsförmedlingen har tagit fram en handlingsplan för att få fler utrikes födda kvinnor i arbete eller studier. Syftet är att bättre [...]

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Work

20 Jun 2018

Snabbspår och stickspår – En jämställdhetsgranskning av etableringsinsatser i budgetpropositionen för 2017

Sveriges Kvinnolobby har granskat etableringsinsatserna i statsbudgeten för 2017. Resultatet visar att kvinnor missgynnas i alla delar av e [...]

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Work

20 Jun 2018

Flere i arbeid med Jobbsjansen

Siden oppstart i 2005 og fram til utgangen av 2016, har over 1700 innvandrere fått jobb etter å ha deltatt i Jobbsjansen. Hjemmeværende i [...]

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Work

20 Jun 2018

Is the Last Mile the Longest?

Economic Gains from Gender Equality in Nordic Countries [...]

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Work

20 Jun 2018

Veiledning i introduksjonsprogrammet – En kvalitativ studie i fem kommuner

Dette notatet gir en kortfattet beskrivelse og oppsummering av FoU-prosjektet «Arbeidsretting og differensiering av introduksjonsprogrammet [...]

Maps for the theme

Immigration & development

8 Feb 2018

Female international net migration rate in 2015

This map shows the international net migration rate for females in 2015. International migration refers to the migration to and from abroad [...]

Immigration & development

8 Feb 2018

Foreign born female ratio in 2016

This map shows the ratio of male and female in the foreign born population in 2016 on municipal (big map) and regional level (small map). [...]

Examples of best practice for the theme

Labour Market Integration of Female Refugees

21 Sep 2018

Bydelsmødrene

Bydelsmödrarna är i första hand kvinnor med minoritetsbakgrund som gör en frivillig insats i sitt bostadsområde. De stöttar kvinnor so [...]

Labour Market Integration of Female Refugees

4 Jul 2018

Jobbsjansen – Målet er å øke sysselsettingen blant innvandrere som står langt fra arbeidsmarkedet

I 2013 ble tiltaket Jobbsjansen innført som en permanent ordning. Målet med ordningen er å øke sysselsettingen blant innvandrere som st [...]

Labour Market Integration of Female Refugees

20 Jun 2018

EMPOWER – Training for women of foreign origins and support workers

The Directorate of Labour in Iceland is a partner in an Erasmus+ project that has the aim of develop training materials for vulnerable women [...]

Labour Market Integration of Female Refugees

7 Nov 2017

Samordnad handlingsplan för internationella kvinnor

Sysselsättningsgapet mellan utomeuropeiskt födda kvinnor och den övriga arbetskraften är större i Malmö än i övriga storstadslän oc [...]

Labour Market Integration of Female Refugees

31 Oct 2017

EMPOWER – Training for women of foreign origins and support workers

The Directorate of Labour in Iceland is a partner in an Erasmus+ project that has the aim of develop training materials for vulnerable women [...]

Labour Market Integration of Female Refugees

31 Oct 2017

Pikku-Mustikka, Lilla blåbäret

Sateenkaari Koto är en ideell förening som sedan 1998 arbetar i invandrarmiljöer med utbildning av barn i tidig ålder. Man har märkt fl [...]

Labour Market Integration of Female Refugees

27 Oct 2017

Flyktning- og innvandrertjenesten, Lørenskog kommune

Flyktning- og innvandrertjenestens mandat er å jobbe med bosetting, integrering og kvalifisering av flyktninger bosatt i Lørenskog. Da Lø [...]

Labour Market Integration of Female Refugees

6 Oct 2017

Mirjam – underlättar etablering på arbetsmarknaden för nyanlända kvinnor

Projekt Mirjam är ett ESF-finansierat projekt som ägs av Arbetsförmedlingen. Mirjam finns i Östergötland och Södermanland och erbjuder [...]

Labour Market Integration of Female Refugees

2 Oct 2017

BaZar hjälper kvinnor till jobb

22 procent av de utrikesfödda i Norrbotten är öppet arbetslösa jämfört med 6,5 procent av de inrikes födda. Kvinnor med låg utbildni [...]

Labour Market Integration of Female Refugees

28 Aug 2017

Yalla Trappan

Yalla Trappan är ett arbetsintegrerande socialt företag och kvinnokooperativ som drivs av en ideell förening i Rosengård i Malmö. Det [...]

Seminars on the theme

No related seminars found.

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